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

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Zimbabwe bishop slams leaders
Archbishop Pius Ncube of Bulawayo
Ncube said Africa's leaders had also not done enough in DR Congo
An outspoken critic of President Robert Mugabe has accused Africa's leaders of ignoring the crisis in Zimbabwe.

"All they do is back each other up and drink tea together," said Archbishop Pius Ncube of Bulawayo.

The African Union summit has dropped a report criticising Zimbabwe's human rights record from its agenda after complaints from Mr Mugabe's government.

Mr Ncube said that Mr Mugabe was planning to use food aid as a political tool to win elections next year.

"It is clear that they want to use starvation as a tool to get people to vote for them," he said.

The Zimbabwe government is predicting bumper harvests this year after three years of food shortages.

But the United Nations estimates that Zimbabwe will grow less than half the food it needs this year.


The AU's executive council adopted the critical report, which was written in 2002, on Monday.

But Zimbabwe's Foreign Minister Stan Mudenge said this had broken procedural rules because his ministry had not been given the chance to see it first.

Zimbabwean children receiving food aid
The UN predicts more food shortages in Zimbabwe
However, a coalition of Zimbabwean human rights groups said the report had been delivered to the justice ministry on 5 February.

"African leaders keep saying it is for the people of Zimbabwe to work it out. This is just an excuse for them. They fear facing the facts but they know very well there are so many injustices in Zimbabwe," Mr Ncube said.

He also said they had not done enough to stop the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where some three million people have died.

African leaders, except those of Botswana, Ghana and Senegal, have been reluctant to criticise Mr Mugabe's rule.

BBC Southern Africa correspondent Barnaby Phillips says many African leaders agreed with Mr Mugabe that Zimbabwe's crisis is caused by British interference and historic inequalities in land ownership.

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Mail and Guardian

Robert Mugabe's reign of terror

      Terry Leonard | Johannesburg

      07 July 2004 14:00

Zimbabwe's government continues to step up its crackdown on dissent, using
new repressive laws and state-sponsored violence to create a pervasive
atmosphere of terror, critics said on Wednesday.

Archbishop Pius Ncube, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Bulawayo in
Zimbabwe's western Matabeleland, told a news conference that the new
repressive laws show "Mugabe's regime has made sure they can beat anyone
into submission".

Ncube, reverend Kumbukani Phiri of the Zimbabwe Pastors Conference, Jonah
Gokova of the Ecumenical Support Services and Jacob Mafume of Lawyers for
Human Rights urged the international community to pressure Zimbabwe to
restore the rule of law.

Inside Zimbabwe, government opponents -- including the opposition Movement
for Democratic Change -- had been too passive and must now step up pressure
on the regime, the four said.

Ncube bitterly accused South African President Thabo Mbeki of making
repression worse in Zimbabwe by backing Mugabe "hook, line and sinker."

South Africa should publicly recognise the injustice in Zimbabwe, the
violations of human rights and insist on lawful conduct by the Zimbabwean
government, Ncube said.

Ncube also blasted the African Union, which is holding a heads of state
summit in Ethiopia, for doing nothing to end the repression in Zimbabwe.

"All they do is back each other up and drink tea," Ncube said.

The four predicted the violence in repression in Zimbabwe would escalate as
the country moves closer to general elections next March.

"We are dealing here with very deceitful people and there is no way we are
going to have free and fair elections," said Ncube.

The four men pointed out that the government refused to release voters rolls
to the public or opposition parties ahead of the 2002 presidential election.
However, they said they managed to obtain the rolls for four constituencies,
representing 3%of total voters.

They said an analysis of those rolls showed 35% of the names represented
voters who didn't exist. They said there were 840 000 dead people listed on
the four roles, 600 000 duplicate names, more than 700 000 were voters "not
known" at the given
addresses and that the official results inflated the number of people
registered by three percent.

Mafume said it would be fruitless for the opposition to contest the next

He said the new laws prevent them from campaigning and deny them access to
money and state media.

"The result is a foregone conclusion," he said.

Ncube said the government was moving to close down aid agencies that have
been distributing food in Zimbabwe, indicating they will use food as a
political weapon in the next election.

"They want to starve the people so the people will have to vote for them [to
receive food]," he said. "They want to starve people as a political tool,
the whole thing is viscous."

The government, they said, armed with its new public security laws, has
become bolder about using police and its youth and ruling party militias to
intimidate people and crush dissent throughout the country.

New security laws make it illegal for two or more people to meet to discuss
politics or to organise any protest or demonstration without prior police
approval. Police have used the laws to arrest critics and even to prevent
prayer meetings.

At the same time, pro-government groups and militias carry out acts of
intimidation against the opposition with impunity.

"Youth militias go to villages and say, `If you don't vote for us,' we will
come back and burn your homes," said Ncube.

He also said opponents of the government now estimated that one out every 50
Zimbabweans is now a government informant. He said they have infiltrated all
kinds of organisations, including churches, to help the government crush

"He [Mugabe] has created a pervasive atmosphere of terror that does not
allow democratic discourse," said Mafume.

Ncube said the government, in an attempt to stifle his criticism, even
offered him one of the farms it seized in its controversial land reform
programme. He rejected the offer. - Sapa-AP
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Sunday Times (SA)

MDC blamed for rights row at AU summit

Wednesday July 07, 2004 15:13 - (SA)

HARARE - Zimbabwe's information minister blamed the main opposition for a
damning report on human rights abuses in the country that was discussed
ahead of an African Union summit in Ethiopia, state radio reported

The report, compiled by the African Commission on People's and Human Rights
two years ago but released at the current summit, claimed there had been
serious human rights abuses committed by the government of President Robert

But Information Minister Jonathan Moyo accused senior opposition Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC) officials of "attempting to smuggle a report and
table it before the ongoing summit".

"We know it was the likes of (MDC spokesman) Paul Themba Nyathi, the likes
of (MDC secretary general) Welshman Ncube" who are also responsible for the
information contained in the report, Moyo was quoted as saying on state

Political tensions are rising in Zimbabwe between Mugabe's ruling party and
the MDC ahead of parliamentary elections due in March next year.

Earlier this week Foreign Minister Stan Mudenge refused to discuss the
report at the AU summit, which is due to end on Thursday, saying that it had
been introduced in violation of procedures.

An official told AFP in Addis Ababa on Wednesday that because of this the
report was not likely to be tabled during the current session.

"The African Commission on People's and Human Rights was expected to submit
the report to all concerned parties. This has not happened. Regulations were
not adhered to," he said.

On Tuesday, the MDC had welcomed the report's exposure of alleged human
rights violations by the government.

"We call upon the AU to take concrete steps to ensure that the Zimbabwean
government corrects its appalling record on civil liberties, freedom of
speech and human rights," the party said in a statement.

But the information minister rejected the report, telling the state
broadcaster that it had been clandestinely introduced by the opposition,
whom he accused of working in concert with British Prime Minister Tony

"What you get here is a very telling example of the extent to which,
unfortunately, some people who call themselves Zimbabweans... have gone
selling their country out, and doing this at the behest of Tony Blair," said

The archbishop of Buluwayo, Pius Ncube, separately slammed the AU's apparent
decision to back away from tackling the report during the summit.

"I heard yesterday (Tuesday) that the AU has failed to endorse the report
because Zimbabwe said they have not seen it but they've had it for two
years," he said at a breakfast meeting in Johannesburg.

"That's the sad thing about African leaders, they go there (to the summit)
just to support each other. I'm terribly disappointed, my heart is really

"African leaders keep saying it is for the people of Zimbabwe to work it
out. This is just an excuse for them. They fear facing the facts but they
know very well there are so many injustices in Zimbabwe," Ncube said.

Mugabe's government accuses Britain of working with the five-year old
opposition to topple his government, which has been in power since 1980. The
MDC deny the charges.

A forum of human rights organisations in Harare has claimed the government
was in fact given a copy of the report by the African Commission on People's
and Human Rights in February this year.

According to a statement released Wednesday, the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO
Forum said "the requirement by the African Commission to present the report
to the (Zimbabwe) government... was adequately satisfied."

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Zimbabwe: New hope for education
New Zealand Government Donates Nearly One-Half Million Dollars

HARARE, ZIMBABWE/6 July 2004-UNICEF today received a contribution of
US$465,920 from the New Zealand Agency for International Development to fund
a multifaceted primary education, life and livelihood skills project for
children out of school and dropouts involving both schools and surrounding
communities in 2 districts.  The 2-year project will target 20 primary
schools in Zimbabwe's southwestern districts of Bulilima and Mangwe, with
objectives to improve the quality of HIV/AIDS life skills education, provide
educational opportunities and improve psychosocial care for 10,000 orphans
and other vulnerable children (OVC).  Schools, community members, and
especially those families caring for OVC, will co-develop and strengthen
their abilities to better respond to the educational, psychosocial and
economic challenges related to OVC, both as a group and individually.

The funding is viewed as critical support at this time when family and
community coping mechanisms are stretched.   Last year alone, enrolment
rates dropped 30 per cent to 65 per cent nationally. As school fees rose,
many children were forced to drop-out, especially the orphaned, creating an
environment for even greater vulnerability.   This project now presents as
an opportunity to help redress the situation.

 "Today's number of orphans in Zimbabwe stands at over 1 million, of which
75% are orphaned as a direct result of the AIDS pandemic. And trends predict
a continued rise, with numbers expected to catapult beyond 1.3 million by
the year 2005 - a figure that clearly cannot be ignored,"said UNICEF
Representative Dr. Festo P. Kavishe, " We welcome this support provided by
New Zealand AID. We know that investing in children's education, especially
for the country's most vulnerable, is the best way to provide them with the
needed care and support and in turn stop the virus spreading further.

The implementation strategy for this initiative is premised on a right's
based approach to programming involving technical support from UNICEF and
its partners, plus active community participation at all levels.  Over the
years project experience has demonstrated that involved communities promote
ownership and empowerment, which ultimately creates lasting benefits to
society as a whole.  The success of this project towards integrating these
children back into mainstream education could lend itself well as the
replicating model for future similar programmes across the nation.

A spokesperson for New Zealand AID, emphasized the importance of addressing
the situation now.  "We are pleased to contribute funding to this important
initiative on behalf of Zimbabwe's orphaned children.  The crucial work
UNICEF and others are doing in the area of child education will offer
Zimbabwe's orphans and other disadvantaged, an opportunity for a better


UNICEF Zimbabwe works both at national level and in 18 target districts in
the country in areas of health, nutrition, water and sanitation, HIV/AIDS,
education and life skills in efforts to ensure the basic rights of all
children are realized.

For more information, please contact:

Shantha Bloemen, Communications Officer, UNICEF Zimbabwe,
Tel: +263 4 703941/2 Ext. 222
Mobile: +263 (0)91 276120

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'Harare lied'
06/07/2004 21:17  - (SA)

Harare - President Robert Mugabe's government which tried to block issuing a
report by the African Union's human rights watchdog by saying it had not
been given the document, in fact, had had it for five months, Zimbabwe's
main human rights organisation said on Tuesday.

The report by the African Commission for Human and People's Rights
condemning "flagrant human rights violations" in Zimbabwe caused an uproar
at a meeting of the AU council of ministers meeting.

It was the first time in the past five years of violent political repression
in Zimbabwe than any AU organisation has openly criticised Mugabe's regime.

Observers say the report represents a major diplomatic defeat for
80-year-old Mugabe, who has secured until now almost total African backing
for his rule condemned by the Western world.

Zimbabwe foreign minister Stanislaus Mudenge was quoted on Tuesday by the
state-controlled daily Herald in Harare as saying in Addis Ababa that
Zimbabwe "had not been afforded the right of reply", and the report could
not be forwarded to the full AU summit for discussion.

Had sent a fact-finding mis

The newspaper claimed that "the hand of the British" was behind the report.

However, a statement issued on Tuesday by the Zimbabwe Human Rights
Non-Governmental Organisation Forum, said the African Commission had sent a
fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe in June 2002 immediately after presidential
elections, which were won by Mugabe.

The report was debated and formally adopted in November last year.

"The forum was reliably informed on February 5 that the fact-finding mission
report was with the government of Zimbabwe," it said.

The document would be published "together with the comments of the
government as soon as this was received".

The government has made no mention of receiving the document, although the
Herald, regarded as the government's official mouthpiece, admitted the
justice ministry received a copy.

The justice ministry was the commission's official host in 2002.

Reports were for 'member states'

"This was dismissed because, in terms of protocol, the commission should
have sent the report through the ministry of foreign affairs," the Herald

But the forum statement said the "rules of the commission are silent on the
ministry to which a mission should be submitted". Reports were to be
submitted to "member states," it said.

"The forum is therefore of the view that the requirement by the African
Commission to present the report to the government... was adequately

It was unclear on Tuesday whether the report would be forwarded to the AU
summit, after Mudenge mounted sustained objections. - Sapa-dpa

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Zim Observer

      Zimbabwe to respond to land reform report
      by STAFF EDITORS (7/7/2004)

THE Zimbabwe government is yet to respond to allegations that it returned £3
million for land reform which the British government availed to it before
1990 saying it was excessive for the projects they wanted to bankroll at the
time. Speaking in the House of Commons while opening a debate on Zimbabwe on
Thursday last week, Britain's Foreign secretary, Jack Straw claimed the
government failed to fully utilise the £47 million fund availed to it as it
had failed to formulate project proposals.

Straw's remarks are the latest in a series of denials by the British
government that it reneged on its promises made at the 1979 Lancaster House
talks to fund post-independence Zimbabwe's land reforms.

"It is a mark of the Zimbabwean government's failure over that period that
they handed back £3 million of that £47 million, because they had
insufficient projects on which to spend it-a sign that until the late 1990s,
the process, whose pace was dictated by the Zimbabwean government, had been
progressing at a relatively modest pace and with a low political priority.
This coincided with years of growing prosperity for Zimbabwe,' said
Straw.Foreign Affairs spokesperson Pavelyn Musaka said it was only the
minister of Finance, Herbert Murerwa, who could comment on the matter.

The House of Commons opened a debate on Zimbabwe on the first of this month,
in which its legislators sought ways on how to "deal" with Zimbabwe, a
development Foreign Affairs Minister Stan Mudenge said they were watching so
as to respond accordingly.

The motion came a day after the ruling Zanu PF had won a motion in
Parliament to investigate the MDC's relationship with the UK. This was after
the British Prime Minister, Tony Blair had claimed his government was
working with the opposition to effect regime change in Zimbabwe.

Source: Daily Mirror
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Globe and Mail, Canada

Censors hoist on their own petard

Globe and Mail Update

 For the past five years, the government of Zimbabwe has coupled attacks on
the political opposition with a systematic clampdown on the independent
media. Authorities have censored press outlets, arrested dozens of
journalists on spurious charges and allowed ruling party supporters to
attack and harass reporters with impunity.
For the past two years, ZANU-PF has used a media-licensing regime to rigidly
control the country's press. The government gets to decide who can be a
journalist and which media can operate. Last September, Information Minister
Jonathan Moyo, ZANU-PF's feisty spin-doctor, used a licensing pretext to
shut down the Daily News, Zimbabwe's most popular newspaper and a vocal
critic of President Robert Mugabe's regime.
Last year, the government capped its effective ban on foreign journalists
when it defied a court order and forcibly expelled veteran Guardian reporter
Andrew Meldrum from the country. Mr. Meldrum is British.
Mr. Mugabe's government has remained impervious to criticism from the
international community about its treatment of the media. What quiet
diplomacy has been tried by the country's African neighbours has caused
little stir in the ranks of the ruling Zimbabwe African National
Union-Patriotic Front.
But what may have a bearing on the future of Zimbabwe's media are the
growing tremors within ZANU-PF itself.
Last month, the country's Media and Information Commission, a
government-controlled media licensing and regulatory body, closed a private
weekly named The Tribune. The MIC told the newspaper that its licence would
be suspended for one year for multiple violations of the country's draconian
press law.
The Tribune's crimes? Failing to inform the MIC that the paper had new
owners, a new title and was now publishing once a week instead of twice.
Given the Mugabe government's distaste for the private media, it should come
as no surprise that authorities would shutter another newspaper with little
provocation. But there is something different about this closure, something
seemingly nonsensical. The Tribune is owned by a ZANU-PF legislator.
Why would the government turn against one of its own?
Zimbabwean journalists say The Tribune's closure is related to ZANU-PF
internal politics. Since Mr. Mugabe announced to Kenyan journalists in May
that he planned to retire when his current term expires in 2008, the latent
factionalism in the ruling party has intensified, becoming an apparent
succession struggle.
In these power scuffles, Jonathan Moyo has been pitted against some of
ZANU-PF's veteran old guard, including his immediate party superior,
Secretary for Information and Publicity Nathan Shamuyarira.
The battle between the two officials became public after Mr. Shamuyarira
invited a British Sky News team to Harare to interview Mr. Mugabe in May.
Mr. Moyo, who saw no reason why "imperialist mouthpieces" such as Sky News
should get to talk to the President, vociferously criticized the decision
and almost thwarted the interview by trying to have the journalists
Mr. Shamuyarira is known to be a friend of The Tribune's publisher and
ZANU-PF MP Kindness Paradza. It is widely believed that Mr. Paradza entered
the party through Mr. Shamuyarira's patronage. Mr. Paradza is also a veteran
independent journalist, and during his maiden speech in parliament in March,
he criticized the country's repressive press law, an unheard-of gesture from
a member of the ruling party, and one that clearly provoked the ire of the
pugnacious Mr. Moyo.
The Tribune has also carried some articles that indirectly criticized Mr.
Moyo, such as one implying that he had used state agencies to appropriate a
lucrative farm for himself. Mr. Moyo has used the state media to issue
thinly veiled attacks on his opponents within the party, and the Tribune
articles would easily have been perceived as retaliation. In this context,
it is easy to see why Mr. Moyo would use his pet media commission to silence
the newspaper.
With Mr. Mugabe's retirement on the horizon and elections due next year, the
internal jostling for power in ZANU-PF is likely to heat up. But senior
party officials who oppose Mr. Moyo's high ambitions are sure to face a
communication problem, since Mr. Moyo has a stranglehold on all state media.
Utilizing the few remaining private media to voice their positions is
impossible for these officials, as it would be seen as colluding with the
enemy. And besides, Mr. Moyo can freely revoke the licences of media that
criticize him.
It appears that, except for Mr. Moyo, ZANU-PF's leaders have become victims
of their own repressive media policies. Perhaps these same officials, who
have worked so assiduously to stamp out press freedom in Zimbabwe, will
understand its value now that they have to cope with the consequences of
their actions.
It is unlikely that appeals for greater press freedom will find many
sympathetic ears in the government just yet. While ZANU-PF remains
preoccupied with defeating the country's political opposition, it will
continue to rebuff international criticism of its human-rights violations.
The African Union summit of heads of state is taking place this week in
Addis Ababa, but it is unlikely to do more than gloss over Mr. Mugabe's
penchant for censorship. Nonetheless, the international community still has
a duty to protest the Zimbabwean government's abuses, and to pressure
ZANU-PF to scrap its stifling licensing regime - not in order to gain
converts among self-serving politicians who would view greater press freedom
as politically expedient, but on behalf of Zimbabwean citizens, who are
increasingly losing their ability to speak out against Mr. Mugabe's
repressive tactics.
Adam Posluns is the research associate for the Africa program at the
Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), an international press freedom
watchdog based in New York.
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The Cape Times

      Words and deeds
      July 7, 2004

      By the Editor

      Slowly but surely the political tide appears to be shifting against
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and his government.

      Earlier this week, details emerged of an African Union (AU) report
which strongly condemned Zimbabwe's human rights record.

      Another disapproving voice was raised yesterday, this time that of
United Nations secretary-general Kofi Annan. Although his comments were
phrased very subtly, there is no doubt Mugabe was among those he had in mind
when he said leaders should know "when to pass on the torch".

      Of further significance was that Annan made the comments at an AU
forum - to applause from the African heads of state present.

      He outlined several attributes of a democracy: free and fair
elections; an independent judiciary; a free and independent media; and an
opposition whose role is respected. Zimbabwe fails on most, if not all,
these counts.

      The AU summit currently taking place in Ethiopia must be applauded for
another reason as well: it is also taking aim at the widespread gender
discrimination on the continent.

      No less than Olusegun Obasanjo, the new AU chairman, said most African
societies - "if not all" - were male chauvinist.

      This chauvinism has long been responsible for one of the less
talked-about, but very real forms of oppression in Africa.

      Botswana's President Festus Mogae further pointed out that HIV/Aids
and domestic violence affected women disproportionately. Even genital
mutilation came under fire.

      The AU summit - the third since it was inaugurated in July 2002 - is
displaying a serious commitment to a wide range of human rights. It
certainly needs to make up for its past lethargy.

      The three-day summit got off to a rousing start yesterday. When it
ends tomorrow, those bold declarations must be converted into reality.

      Words have all too often been betrayed by a lack of deeds in the past.

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The Herald

Zesa introduces load shedding

Herald Reporter
ZIMBABWE Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) Holdings has introduced
load-shedding throughout the country following a shortage of power.

The company's general manager for corporate affairs Mr Obert Nyatanga said
the power utility has a shortfall of 240 megawatts brought about by an
increase in demand due to the cold spell and non-availability of additional
imports from the region.

Mr Nyatanga said the load-shedding would affect only a few areas and would
be done during the morning and evening peak periods.

"The shedding would be between six and nine in the morning and also six and
nine in the evenings," said Mr Nyatanga.

He said the areas to be affected would be determined by the grid system and
areas where demand is high would be the most affected.

Mr Nyatanga said Zimbabwe uses 2 000 million units of electricity, of which
30 percent is imported. The balance is generated from Kariba Hydro Power
Station and Hwange Thermal Power Station.

However, of the 600 million units received through imports, only 400 million
units are from South Africa's Eskom.

Mr Nyatanga said this has forced the utility to introduce load-shedding
throughout the country while efforts to restore supplies from other regional
utilities in Mozambique, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia are

The Herald was last night inundated with calls from residents of Mabelreign,
Mount Pleasant, Avondale and surrounding areas complaining about power

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The Herald

Row over water treatment chemical

By Michael Padera
A DISPUTE has arisen between Harare City Council and Zimbabwe Phosphate
Industries (Zimphos) over the supply of aluminium sulphate chemical which is
used in the treatment of potable water.

The city has accused Zimphos of misrepresentation and painting a bad picture
of council management after Zimphos said it is owed $15 billion by the local

The council says it owes Zimphos $3 billion, a debt which it says it is

The city has also said it is not ready to accept the Zimphos-supplied
chemical because it does not meet requirements.

Council alleges that the chemical damages pipes, consumes more electricity
and leads to loss of treated water through what are called backwashes.

But Zimphos supply director Mr Misheck Kachere accuses Harare City Council
of buying expensive aluminium sulphate from South Africa despite the fact
that the chemical is readily available in the country.

He said his company stopped supplying the same chemical to the city after
council failed to pay a debt of $15 billion.

"When Zimphos suspended deliveries, City of Harare resorted to importing the
product from South Africa, through traders at almost twice the price," he
said in a statement.

But Harare public relations manager Mr Leslie Gwindi accused Mr Kachere of
trying to hold council at ransom by cutting supplies and not having the
interests of residents at heart.

"We think his attitude is mercenary. He cut us off well knowing that there
was no other local supplier of the chemical, but now that we have
alternative suppliers he begins to cry foul, saying council is buying from
expensive suppliers," he said.

Last September, Zimphos told council that it was going on a shutdown to
carry out maintenance work on its plant, but council maintains the shutdown
was never effected as other companies bought the same chemical from Zimphos
during the "closure" and supplied them to council.

Mr Gwindi maintained that council only owed Zimphos $3 billion, saying the
other amount the company purports to be owed is actually "illegal interest".

He said the current suppliers of the chemical have gone for over 60 days
without payment but have not charged council any interest.

"At the end of the day, the argument that the Zimphos product is cheaper
falls off because of the punitive interest," he said.

Zimphos sells aluminium sulphate at $1 100 a kilogramme while the other
suppliers charge $1 888 a kg.

Mr Gwindi alleged that Zimphos was charging high interest yet the company
was getting the money under the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe productive sector
facility at only 30 percent.

He also dismissed as cheap remarks by Mr Kachere that Zimphos has had a
relationship with council for over 50 years. He said Zimphos was souring
that relationship by use of threats.

Council made a special arrangement to pay its debt but Zimphos went ahead
and cut supplies forcing council to look for new suppliers, Mr Gwindi said.

"We had made a special arrangement to pay them every Friday, but Mr Kachere
refused that arrangement. At one time we almost failed to supply water. If
we had not sought new suppliers the city would have gone dry," he alleged.

Mr Gwindi said council only discovered the alleged deficiencies of the
Zimphos product when it bought from new suppliers.

He said a technical team from Zimphos that was seconded to council confirmed
that their product was inferior.

Zimphos, Mr Gwindi alleged, wanted a monopoly of supply in which it would be
able to dictate to council.

"We cannot deal with on-and-off suppliers. We want suppliers who understand
us and are prepared to work with us when the chips are down," he said.

The city's chief chemist, Mr Lisben Chipfunde, said on paper the Zimphos
product was cheaper but it was more expensive at the end of the day because
of its high level of impurities.

"We are still not satisfied with the Zimphos product because it is not up to
standard. Zimphos should not dictate to us where we should be buying. We, as
the customer, know what is best," he said.

Mr Chipfunde said the use of the aluminium sulphate imported from South
Africa resulted in less consumption of electricity, less frequency of
backwashes and tear and wear of pumps.

"Despite other mechanical breakdowns of machinery, we have noted that when
we use the South African product we have a constant supply of water," he

Harare's water problems have also been blamed on the heavy pollution of
water sources such as Manyame River and Lake Chivero.

Mr Chipfunde said the city faced a shortage of a special type of sand that
is used for filtration.

He said the only supplier of the sand, Gweru Industrial Sands, was failing
to supply because of machine breakdowns.

"Some of the sand in use in the old works was put there 53 years ago while
in the new works it was put in 1976," he said.

He said the sand is no longer suitable for the filtration process.

Sand is used to trap algae and other solids.

Contacted for comment, Zimphos spokesperson Ms Millie Phiri said the company
stands by its early statement issued by Mr Kachere that Harare City Council
owes Zimphos $15 billion.

Mr Kachere last week said Harare City Council had been defaulting on its
payments to Zimphos resulting in suspension of deliveries. The council's
debt, he said, had affected cashflow at Zimphos.

He also confirmed that when Zimphos suspended supplies, the city resorted to
imports from South Africa.

He said there have numerous interventions from Government to resolve the

But Mr Kachere said the city council recently informed his company that its
product was of a lesser quality as compared to that from South Africa
despite council having used the Zimphos product for over 50 years.

"It is alleged that the Zimphos product has more solids causing frequent
de-sludging, sand filter carryover and pump breakdowns," said Mr Kachere.

Following the concerns, he said, Zimphos seconded a team to work with counci
l to investigate the allegations and to compare the two products.

"So far results of the trials have shown that the Zimphos product matches
the South African product and that both meet international specifications
for potable water treatment," he said.

He also said the Zimphos product passed the United Nations quality test,
adding that all other municipalities were satisfied with the product.

But Mr Chipfunde alleged that the Zimphos product was not tested and that
Harare was the only municipality that uses liquid aluminium and was,
therefore, not comparable to any other local authorities.
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Health-Zimbabwe: Street Children Vulnerable to Aids

Inter Press Service (Johannesburg)

July 7, 2004
Posted to the web July 7, 2004

Stanley Karombo

Children who "live rough" on the streets of Zimbabwe's capital and other
cities, face a multitude of problems - including AIDS.

Ten-year-old Molin considers the streets of Zimbabwe's capital her home.
She's not alone.

Research by a Harare-based non-governmental organisation (NGO) - Futures
International - in May 2004, indicated that at least 12,000 children eke out
a living on the country's highways and byways.

Molin says she prefers her current existence to living with her stepmother,
who she describes as abusive. "I lost my mother when I was five," she told
IPS, "and now I cannot stay with my step-mom."

Ignored, pitied and feared in equal measure, Molin and her urban brothers
and sisters have become part of the decaying infrastructure of Zimbabwe's
towns, bribing policemen and sleeping in sewers.

A frail band of beggars, thieves and tricksters, these street children can
appear terribly vulnerable - although they are able to claw their way to
survival if need be, a struggle that has made some violent, and insolent.

They're also at risk of getting AIDS.

Although no official statistics on HIV prevalence amongst street children
exist, an NGO in Harare - Streets Ahead - says it helps treat as many as 150
of the children every month for sexually-transmitted diseases.

"We have more than 150 street children coming in on a monthly basis to get
letters for them to receive free treatment for sexually-transmitted diseases
with a doctor we have identified in Harare," the group's Outreach Programme
Officer, Jack Maravanyika, told IPS.

"The age group of the children is worrying, as most are below the age of 16.
These children are continuously being exposed to the HI-virus."

A young orphan, who said he did not know how old he was, admitted to being
aware of the dangers posed by AIDS. But, he added, "I would rather die of
AIDS than hunger."

Janah Ncube, head of the Woman's Coalition of Zimbabwe, says research has
shown that 18 percent of Zimbabwean women, including street girls, are raped
in their lifetime. The vast majority of rape victims are also infected with
HIV, according to the coalition.

Addressing the plight of street children will require serious commitment
from government and society at large, say rights campaigners.

According to Doreen Mukwena, Director of the Child Protection Society, "The
harsh environment of the street life often exposes these children to the
possibility of physical injuries or death from violence."

However, authorities have yet to rise to the challenge of helping the

The Harare City Council has embarked on a "clean up campaign" that aims to
rid the capital of street children, often perceived as a social menace.

In May, the country was shocked by reports of an accountant who had
allegedly managed to get two street children to help him steal money from
his employer, (the youths were also accused of stealing 12 mobile phones).

The council's campaign involves taking the children to farms where they are
supposed to find work. However, some of the affected children say they were
dumped in the middle of nowhere after being removed from Harare. Needless to
say, no sooner had council officials disappeared, than the children were
back on the streets.

Others are placed in children's homes. But, almost all of the five homes in
Harare now have far too many residents to deal with. Children are only
supposed to remain there for a fortnight while the state locates their
families or finds permanent homes for them; however, this seldom happens in

"In most cases, the home is itself stuck with children who are supposed to
be in transit, because the Department of Social Welfare has no manpower to
do probation work," said a matron at Chinyaradzo Children's Home in

To make matters worse, these institutions are grappling to make ends meet.
Government provides them with less than one U.S. dollar a month for every
child, barely enough for a meal. Many children end up by leaving these
homes, in much the same way that they did their families.

While authorities have put in place policies that encourage communities to
take care of children in need, little funding has been provided in this

In addition, the traditional African notion that a child belongs to everyone
on the community seems to have vanished into thin air - sometimes to be
replaced with mocking indifference. Members of the public who attended the
trial of the children accused of stealing money and mobile phones simply
laughed when the detainees gave a street in the city as their home address.

Why would anyone choose such a life? The children's reasons are as varied as
their personal histories and names.

Molin fled abuse. Others are abandoned, or orphaned - often by AIDS.
According to the United Nations Children's Fund, about 34 percent of
Zimbabwean adults are estimated to be HIV-positive, while more than 600,000
children have been orphaned by AIDS in the country.

The pandemic, combined with the rapid decline of Zimbabwe's economy in
recent years, has put many families in a position where they are simply
unable to care for their children.

Since the beginning of 2000, a campaign of state-sponsored farm invasions
has had a profound impact on agriculture - a key part of Zimbabwe's economy.
Officials maintain that the campaign is aimed at correcting imbalances in
land ownership which date back to the colonial era, and which resulted in
minority whites owning most of the country's prime farmland.

Political violence and human rights abuses, mostly on the part of government
supporters, have also played a part in undermining investor confidence.

Zimbabwe not only has a moral obligation to its children, but a legal one as
well. By signing the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, government
committed itself to ensuring that its citizens uphold child rights.

The convention states that a child has a right to be cared for by its
family, and that if the family is unable or unwilling to do so, the state
should take on this obligation.

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----- Original Message -----
From: "Trudy Stevenson"

This message from Albert Gumbo - a young business executive with a family -
is worth reading.

It is getting more difficult to stay isn’t it? Every week, one hears of bad
news, a robbery here, an arbitrary arrest, a car jacking, a failed auction
bid, and school fees (the kind you are not allowed to pay) and school fees
(the kind you cannot afford to pay)

I traveled to Bulawayo with a colleague yesterday and he told me he was
robbed Friday night at 8:30 pm. Four blokes walked in armed with his garden
tools and proceeded to relieve him of hid decoder, cell phone, VCR and a few
other household items. He was alone with his wife at the time. They slapped
him around a bit but did not touch his wife, except to warn them not to look
at them. What impressed (surprised?) me was his and his wife’s, both in
their late forties, philosophical reaction: “Albert, this could have
happened anywhere, New York, Australia or South Africa.”

True is it not?

Is that reason enough to stay? That is up to you. I find people have left
for different reasons: Non-political activists have claimed political asylum
and wealthy people have left for economic reasons and quite a lot of other
people have left for equally genuine reasons. No hidden meanings there. So I
am not going to dismiss this robbery, in which fortunately no one was hurt,
as a non -event and therefore a reason not to leave.

Rather, I will just bore you with the same story as in my previous messages.
Things will improve and someone has to turn off the lights. It is not just
about the great weather and the great education that Zimbabwe has to offer.
It is not just about the fact that we have the infrastructure in place to
help revive the economy when all other things become equal. The reason, and
I say this as much to myself as I say to who ever is reading this, is: It is
our country damn it and somebody has to stand up for it. Somebody has to
help put pressure on the municipality regarding the water cuts, on Zesa
regarding the power cuts, on politicians regarding law and order, human
rights and democracy, on cell phone service providers regarding the poor
customer service. In short, we get the government, the customer service etc
we deserve if we create a laissez-faire attitude through our unwillingness
to stand up and reject unacceptable service or behaviour. Do we not?

I have argued before that the problem is not the bad guys because they are
simply being true to self! The problem is the few good men and women who
refuse to be true to self and choose cowardice and convenience over
experience for the sake of peace and quiet. Well it has not worked has it?
Zimbabweans rarely complain about or refuse to accept bad service, poor
teaching, not enough/too much homework for the children, not enough drugs in
the hospital, waiting too long in a queue at the hospital, bank etc. How
many of us call ZESA straight away when there is a power cut? Simply
lighting a candle in this instance is not in the spirit of “light a candle
instead of cursing the darkness.” (First time readers will be confused by
that last bit) If we cannot lift a finger about straight forward everyday

 On the flight to Bulawayo, I read in the in-flight magazine about Nancy
Wake. Look her up on the internet, I do not have the time and space to tell
you about her except to say her personal contribution to the Nazi demise was
immense. You should read her story and perhaps then we will understand that
just like Rosa Parks, Ghandi and now the Greek team at Euro 2004, every
individual must pull together for the collective’s sake and then we will
have no reason to debate whether we stay or not.

A Greek friend of mine, in an exuberant moment of patriotic fervour sent me
this quote from Churchill the other day: “The Greeks did not fight like
Heroes, it is the heroes who fought like Greeks!” I am sure my friend will
come back to earth by the time the Olympics are over but the lesson is there
and as the Greeks light up the Olympic torch next month, do not forget to
“light a candle, instead of cursing the darkness” in your country what ever
form that darkness takes for you. Make that change in your attitude, hang in
there and use your voice to help improve the situation around you.

Albert Gumbo
7 July 2004

P.S. I urge you to read about Nancy Wake.

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Drugs Shortage Looming At Council Clinics

The Herald (Harare)

July 7, 2004
Posted to the web July 7, 2004


A SERIOUS shortage of drugs is looming at municipal clinics, with most of
them now resorting to issuing out prescriptions.

Most people receiving treatment at the clinics now end up buying their own
drugs at chemists and pharmacies. This is contrary to what used to happen in
the past when clinics were favoured for their provision of drugs and
treatment at a minimal cost.

The situation has since changed with most of them failing to provide even
drugs and medication like paracetamol and stopayne.

The method of treatment at the clinics is fast becoming similar to that used
by private doctors and specialists, who just examine patients before
prescribing drugs, whose costs are met by the patient.

This method of treatment has invariably pushed up treatment costs, resulting
in many people who are not on medical aid shunning the private doctors in
favour of municipal clinics.

That is why the current situation has been cause for anxiety among patients
who get treated at clinics, most of whom are in the low-income bracket.

Ms Sandra Moyo of Mbare said while she favoured the clinic when taking her
four-year old child for treatment, she was disappointed that she had to buy
all the drugs at the pharmacy
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Record Wage Hikes in Zimbabwe Spell Problems
Peta Thornycroft
07 Jul 2004, 17:10 UTC

The latest round of collective bargaining in Zimbabwe has produced large
wage hikes for private-sector workers. But economists say the increases are
unlikely to lift most workers above the poverty line and could hurt the
employers who are already reeling from the weak economy.
The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions predicted Wednesday that most private
sector workers will almost double their wages as a result of the latest
round of collective bargaining between labor unions and private sector

According to U.N. calculations, the wage hike will bring salaries to about
half the minimum required for basic survival. The U.N. estimates nine out of
10 Zimbabweans live below the poverty line.

The government still has to approve the results of the wage negotiations. If
it does, the lowest paid industrial worker in the private sector will now
earn about $50 a month.

Godfrey Kanyenze, director of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union's
research institute, said employers, who have been struggling in Zimbabwe's
flagging economy will find it even more difficult to survive with the new
wage hikes.

An executive from an engineering firm predicted that, as a result of the pay
increases, employers may have to cut payrolls by as much as a third,
worsening Zimbabwe's unemployment problem. The jobless rate in Zimbabwe is
close to 80 percent.

International aid agencies estimate that at least three million people, or a
quarter of the population, will need food aid this year.

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Independent Scribes Further Remanded

The Herald (Harare)

July 7, 2004
Posted to the web July 7, 2004


FOUR Zimbabwe Independent journalists facing charges of criminal defamation
after writing that President Mugabe had commandeered a plane to travel to
the Far East on personal business were on Monday further remanded to July

The newspaper's former editor Iden Hugh Wetherell, former news editor
Vincent Kahiya, and reporters Dumisani Muleya and Itai Dzamara, who are all
out on bail, briefly appeared before Harare magistrate Ms Memory Chigwaza.

Charges against the four arose on January 9 after they allegedly wrote a
story entitled "Mugabe grabs plane for Far East holiday".

In the story, which is deemed defamatory by the State, the paper claimed
that President Mugabe commandeered an Air Zimbabwe plane to Geneva,
Switzerland, to attend a summit.

The story, it is further alleged, claimed that President Mugabe arbitrarily
took possession of the same Boeing 767-200 plane while in Malaysia to travel
to Indonesia and Singapore.

According to the State, the story was defamatory to the President,
Government and the whole community.

The State argues that the President did not in any way commandeer an
aircraft to Switzerland or call Air Zimbabwe so that it takes him to
Jakarta, Indonesia.

The State also stated that the President does not personally make his travel
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New Zimbabwe

Independence war mass graves unearthed in Zimbabwe

By Agencies
Last updated: 07/08/2004 04:03:13
MASS graves containing the remains of people believed to have been killed
during Zimbabwe's 1970s independence war have been discovered in northern
Zimbabwe, a newspaper said on Wednesday.

The state-run Herald quoted a senior police officer as saying that relatives
"possessed" by the spirits of their dead kin had helped to discover the 19
mass graves in the Mount Darwin area, in the remote north-east of the

The paper gave conflicting figures on the number of people buried in the
graves. It quoted a senior police officer as saying that nearly 5 000
"remains" had been exhumed, while more than 1 900 bodies were reported to
have been discovered.

"With the help of the people possessed by the spirits of the fallen heroes,
we have identified nearly 5 000 human remains, which include those of our
liberation heroes," Senior Assistant Commissioner Winston Changara was
quoted as saying.

The report said more than 1 900 bodies had been found at different sites
scattered throughout Mount Darwin, which was the focus of fierce fighting
during the war.

The paper said the victims were likely to have been villagers and supporters
of black nationalists who were killed more than 24 years ago by special
units of the former white minority government.

The bodies were then dumped down mine shafts, or in mass graves, the paper

Black nationalist fighters, who included the country's current president
Robert Mugabe, waged a bitter guerrilla war against the former white
minority regime of Prime Minister Ian Smith, leading to the country's
independence in 1980.

The latest findings come after small-scale miners discovered bodies down a
disused mine shaft in the same area in September.
Belief in ancestral spirits is prevalent among some traditional Zimbabwean

The Herald reported that villagers in the area have called on the government
to hold traditional cleansing ceremonies and give the bodies a decent
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International Trade Endangering Africa's Treasured Wildlife Species

The Times of Zambia (Ndola)

July 7, 2004
Posted to the web July 7, 2004

Gilbert Kaimana

EVERY year, international trade in wildlife and other species of animal and
plant is estimated to be fetching the dealers billions of dollars. This
includes trade in live animals, animal products, plant products and food.

Like drug dealers, traders in this illegal wildlife trade are attracted by
money to be made from such deals and seem to be oblivious of the penalties
involved when caught.

Widespread and uncontrolled trade has led to plunder of these species, to
the point where many of them are now faced with extinction.

For instance, Zambia's rhino population had depleted to the point where the
country had to import six which were put in the Mosi-Oa-Tunya zoological

Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) director-general Hapenga Kabeta complained
recently that international trade had become the greatest danger to wildlife
and plant species.

"Wildlife species are either endangered or may become endangered from
international trade, especially that international trade in these species is
becoming more popular," Mr Kabeta said.

This trade is even impacting on the poor developing countries, which are not
only the major producers of these resources but are always on the losing
side, because they profit unreasonably lowly from the mass export of their
valuable natural resources.

It was for this reason that the World Conservation Union (IUCN) members
meeting of 1963 adopted a resolution to converge a convention on
international trade in endangered animal and plant species.

This subsequently led to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered
Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which came into force on July 1,
1975, to ensure that international trade in species of wild animals and
plants did not threaten their survival.

The convention has since formulated regulations to govern international
trade, and all the 166 nations that are party to the agreement have endorsed
the measures that are meant to control international trade -- seen as the
number one enemy to the endangered species.

Said CITES chief of scientific support unit David Morgan, who was in the
country recently: "These countries have agreed to the principles and have
endorsed the rules and regulations of the convention as binding."

Mr Morgan said the convention had helped to control cross-border trade in
wildlife and plant species that had for so many years been massively
exploited. He said the convention had been engaged in regulating
international trade in thousands of wildlife, plant and coral species.

In order to effectively implement the convention, CITES empowers member
nations through training in scientific management of sustainable
conservation measures.

He said his organisation had embarked on a series of regional
capacity-building training workshops for convention member states.

The first four workshops took place in other parts of the world, and Zambia
recently hosted the fifth, for the East, Central and Southern African
countries, which took place at Lusaka's Holiday Inn.

The workshop drew participants representing regional bodies that are
involved in wildlife management in all CITES member states in the region.

The workshops are meant to help members of the convention to manage their
natural resources, especially nations in regions like Africa where there is
still an abundance of such resources.

"It goes without saying that African countries are the principal producers
of wildlife and other natural resources, but the trade in these very
resources do not, unfortunately, benefit them.

"Providing workshops like this is meant to help improve the quality of
implementation of the convention," Mr Morgan said.

"It would be good for more effort to be dedicated to training to help build
capacities of the nations in managing fauna and flora species."

He said that member states needed to be empowered to carry on for the
future. This would not only enhance the implementation of the convention but
also preserve the natural resources for generations to come.

He said Africa could not be left out of the capacity-building training
workshops, hence, the convening of the workshop for East, Central and
Southern African countries, which was hosted by ZAWA.

He said Africa had so much to preserve because the continent was an orchard
of hundreds of natural resources that were, unfortunately, heavily

African countries are teeming with varieties of wildlife resources and have
immense potential to benefit from their resources. However, this is not the
case. Mr Morgan said that it was encouraging to the international community,
concerned with the exploitation of the continent's endangered natural

He said it was more encouraging that African countries had ratified the
convention and were actively working to end the rampant illegal trade in
these resources.

"A lot of African countries are producers of bio-diversity like wildlife and
other species," he said.

These countries have valuable economic resources but the value of the
resources can only be realised if these are properly managed.

"If you export too much at once you have a problem because the next year you
will not be able to export the same number. Both plants and animals are
diminishing because of massive trade. If you take out more plants and
animals in a year, the next year you have nothing," he said.

Mr Morgan said that Africa was at an advantage over all regions because it
was not only rich in bio-diversity but that she had these in great varieties
and species.

Civil war

The only African country yet to join the convention is Angola because of the
long-lasting civil war which took almost three decades.

"We hope that they will join very soon because that country too has enormous
natural resources that need to be conserved," he said.

He talks highly of Zambia's potential in wildlife, saying it was one country
that was blessed with the largest species in the region, particularly in the
population of elephant and hippo.

"Zambia's beautiful heritage will still be there in the next 50 to 100
years. She is very wealthy in animal species," Mr Morgan said.

He said CITES was committed to helping member countries to gain skills, to
sustainably conserve and manage their natural resources in the best way

The chief of scientific support unit of CITES praised the ZAWA for the quota
of 20 elephants for sport hunting for this year, saying this was a good
number and would bring in more foreign exchange. ZAWA has also submitted a
proposal to start hunting crocodiles, which is expected to be held at a
CITES meeting in Thailand this November.

Within the region, South Africa is the most flora-endowed country. It was
noted that while other countries sent in four delegates, except for Zimbabwe
which only sent two CITES-sponsored delegates to this workshop, South Africa
sponsored an additional 10-man delegation.

Mr Morgan said the commitment by South Africa, as well as Zimbabwe, was
testimony not only of how African countries were willing to implement the
dictates of the convention but also showed their desperation to benefit from
their own resources.

Mr Kabeta said the workshop was an eye opener for the regional countries
that, for a long time, had not benefited much from the work of the

He said developing countries, especially those in the sub-Saharan region,
had always complained about the failure by the world's watchdog to make
professional decisions, as decisions that had been made in the past had
always favoured developed countries.

It was time that pledges made by the developed world for the developing
nations began to flow in order to develop capacities for the latter to
effectively manage wildlife and plant resources.

The ZAWA director-general said the workshop, which accommodated 50 delegates
from 12 regional countries, had equipped the regional bodies that were
charged with the responsibilities of managing the resources with skills to
do efficiently.

He said Africa had always yearned for scientific skills and techniques in
that regard.

Mr Morgan said Southern Africa, in particular, was very important on the
CITES agenda because it was among leading regions thought to be requiring
more innovative thinking on how to manage wildlife.

He said what was required was for these countries to strengthen their
systems that dealt with hunting permits, saying permits should only be
issued when, and if, it had been proved that the quantities being requested
for to be exported, would be not be incompatible with the convention's

Implementing institutions like ZAWA should work with customs authorities to
ensure that only approved numbers of wildlife products were traded in,
especially in international trade.

"They should forge close relationships with their customs institutions in
order to curb exploitation of wildlife. The customs officials need to be
trained so that when they see these wildlife products, they will be able to
ask for export permits," he said.

For Zambia, ZAWA has already taken up this challenge and has already held a
workshop for officers in the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA).

The workshop also included officers from the Zambia Police Service,
Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and
Government line ministries.

CITES wants sustainability of the endeavours in regulating the rules of the
convention but much work still has to be done by all interested parties. Mr
Morgan said there was still room for improving the quality of implementation
of the convention.

More dedication is needed not only by the countries that are losing
thousands of animals through international trade that is not even benefiting
them, but also by CITES, as a world body, to ensure that trade in these
endangered species is regulated.

The CITES official said there was need for all member countries to work
together to ensure that the rules were followed by everyone.

"All countries need to put more resources in managing wildlife," Mr Morgan

He said at the moment, the rules and regulations of the convention were
taken for granted despite the fact that more than ever before, trade in the
endangered species had become big business.

Organisations taking care of wildlife and other resources such as ZAWA need
to be supported to be able to conserve these resources.
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