Living in the shadow of Mugabe's evil
arrived here from Zimbabwe less than two years ago - tortured,
barely able to walk. Now she's been reunited with her son and
begun a new
life in Yorkshire. Chris Bond went to meet her at
the start of Refugee
SHE greets me with a wonderful, slightly bashful, smile.
smile as infectious as it is genuine and draws your attention
away from the scars on her legs.
At the moment, life is good for
Sibongile; she is working as a carer for the
Jewish Welfare Board, in Leeds,
and in February was reunited with her son,
Prince, who she hadn't seen for 18
They live in a small flat in Harehills and Prince has recently
school in the city.
But this peaceful picture is a far cry from
the harrowing psychological and
physical trauma Sibongile endured at the
hands of President Mugabe's
When she arrived at Heathrow
in October 2002, after fleeing her homeland,
her legs were so badly beaten
she could hardly walk.
Shocked Immigration officers raised her case with the
Home Office and she
was granted refugee status within six weeks.
sent to Leeds to begin rebuilding her shattered life, leaving behind
young son, mother and five brothers and sisters.
It has been an horrific few
years for the 33-year-old mother-of-one, and
just as the scars on her legs
bear testament to her physical abuse, so the
occasional glimmer of fear in
her eyes reveals the depth of her
psychological trauma. Even now, she is
afraid and doesn't want her picture
shown for fear of reprisals against her
family back home.
Sibongile was brought up in Zimbabwe's second city,
Bulawayo, the daughter
of a carpenter, James, and a teacher, Melta. She says
that her early life
was relatively peaceful and it was only after Robert
Mugabe's Zanu-PF party
came to power in 1980 that the situation
"When I was young, life was OK; it was not too difficult until
when the ruling party got into power and started killing
She became pregnant at the age of 18 but says she and Prince's
separated after Prince was born, although the pair remained in touch
his death last year.
Once Prince was a little older, Sibongile went
to study dress-making at a
college in neighbouring Botswana where she spent
five years before returning
to Zimbabwe at the end of 2001.
She admits she
was nervous about returning home having already seen her
murdered by soldiers two years earlier at a family Christmas
reunion - a
portent of what was to follow.
Her eyes glaze over as she recalls a memory
too unbearable to forget and all
she says is there were men with sticks who
"beat him" while she and her
horrified family were forced to
Sibongile claims her father was killed simply because he was a
the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) - the main opposition
Her own ordeal began in spring 2002 when she went to visit her cousin,
wife of the MDC's vice-president.
She says she was stopped by members
of Mugabe's Criminal Intelligence
Organisation (CIO) who found her carrying
an MDC card.
"They didn't take me to the police station; they took me to this
they were torturing people inside. They started asking me why I
opposition's card and I told them I thought there might be a
Sibongile says she was tortured, along with two other girls who
by six men for hours on end.
"I was beaten. I was there for
seven days. They used big sticks to beat me
under the feet and on the legs
and they would dip me in ice-cold water and
put a plastic bag round my head
so I couldn't breathe.
"They would hit me everywhere with clubs and fists and
anything they could
think of," she says. "Sometimes I would call out to stop,
they would leave. But you couldn't sleep because you knew they
When she was finally released, the interrogators
ransacked her home,
searching for her passport and any incriminating
"I was in a terrible state; they came every day to make sure I was
It was her uncle, a businessman in Harare, who came to her
aid after he
heard what was happening. He arranged for her to be taken to Kwe
she was able to hide with relatives.
But even then she wasn't
safe and was forced to sleep under a bed.
"They came to my mother asking my
whereabouts. They threatened to kill her
and they searched for me all over
"They put posters up all over the streets with my picture on. If
found me, they would have done anything," she says.
October 2002, after four months in hiding, her uncle arranged for
her to be
smuggled out of Zimbabwe.
"My uncle gave my passport to a man; there were
photos of me and others all
round the airport. I was told to put on a hat to
hide my face," she says.
Sibongile flew from Harare to Gatwick where she was
helped by immigration
officers and dispersed to Leeds the following
She says it took a long time before she could talk about her
with the help of refugee support groups in the city, she was
able to get a
job in a care home.
"My mother was tortured, she was beaten,
and so were my brothers and
sisters. It was really terrible.
really difficult when I first came here because I was scared they
after me. Even now I don't always feel safe."
But in February this year she
was finally reunited with her son after 18
died last year in a mysterious car accident, and Sibongile
had feared she
would never see her son again. "When I saw him, I started
crying, I just
couldn't believe my eyes. The last time I saw him he was
still a small boy
but he had really grown."
The pair are beginning to settle in Yorkshire and
Prince has started to make
new friends, but her harrowing experience has
taken its toll on Sibongile.
Christine Madjit, who runs the Leeds-based
organisation Positive Action for
Refugees, helped her when she first arrived
"When I first saw her, she was extremely traumatised by what
her. She had been very badly treated, her legs were in a terrible
"But she's a strong woman, she's very strong-willed to have
everything she has," she said.
"A lot of people who suffer human
rights abuse feel ashamed. They blame
themselves sometimes and it can be very
hard to talk about it.
"It's strange, but the Zimbabweans don't mix because
some people claim
there's Mugabe people here trying to claim asylum and
they're afraid someone
will report them; there's always that fear with
According to Amnesty International, in 2002 more than 1,000 people
tortured by the police, security forces and Mugabe supporters.
organisation says Mugabe's régime has adopted a policy of
repression" against all government opponents through arbitrary
torture, extra-judicial executions and the curtailment of various
"We continue to receive reports of violence. It is most
often members of the
Zanu-PF and the security forces, but it's the police as
well," a spokeswoman
Sibongile says she speaks regularly to her
relatives back home who tell her
the situation remains perilous.
still bad because people are still being tortured, there is no food
are no jobs. They are taking farms from the owners and they are
She says she likes England but hopes to return to Africa
"If things work out, I would be more than happy to go home, but I
return while Mugabe and the ruling party are in charge because
could happen to me."
Mugabe jun blocks Bok practice
16/06/2004 19:43 -
Cape Town - Springbok coach Jake White suffered yet another
nightmare when hundreds of fans were barred from attending
the "open" Bok
practice at Bishops on Wednesday.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's son was being enrolled at
Among those turned away at the gate by Bishops' Noel Greeff was
selector Pieter Jooste and former Bok Cobus Burger, who played
World XV in 1989.
Those cars with Bishops' stickers on
their windscreens were allowed in -
much to the chagrin of those on the
outside, looking in.
White said: "I was phoned this morning (Wednesday)
and told that Grace
Mugabe was coming to the school to enrol her son. I left
it in their hands
to handle. I just think it was a
The reason, according to Greeff, was that White had
apparently told him the
training session was closed to all media and
Using Bok practice as a smokescreen
"Jake told me this
morning - that the session was closed - and he said it to
the supervisor of
the guards," said Greeff afterwards.
But the group of people at the front
gate grew increasingly angry each time
a car was allowed
"They are Bishops boys. They are entitled," explained
It seems Greeff was using the Bok practice as a smokescreen to
journalists at bay, while the unsuspecting public was merely caught up
Even when Bok media liaison, Rayaan Adriaanse, approached
Greeff to tell him
White had given the go-ahead to open the gates, Greeff
refused to budge.
Eventually, after about half an hour of waiting, the
matter was cleared up
by a school official and people were allowed into the
By this stage, though, the damage had been done with about 100
away, most of them young fans.
Bok manager Arthob
Petersen was shocked when told that hoards of young Bok
supporters had been
"What are you telling me?" he asked with a
He said: "We are appreciative of the support of the
public, so for what
reason would we close a session after initially saying it
Irate man leaves in disgust
"We were told there was some
celebrity who was coming to register her child
and the request from the
school was to keep the media away for a period.
This was not deliberate from
"We didn't know at all that this had been arranged."
irate man turned away in disgust. "I can't afford the R250 for a ticket
the Test on Saturday," he said, "so I brought my child to watch today
this happens. It's a complete disgrace. I can't believe it. We were all
it was open."
The Springboks clash with Ireland in the eagerly
awaited second Test at
Newlands on Saturday.
Varsity Shelves Law Degree
The Herald (Harare)
Posted to the web June 16, 2004
Zimbabwe University (GZU) in Masvingo has stopped offering the law
after the Council for Legal Education ruled the course was not up
Plans are underway to transfer affected students to the
Zimbabwe in Harare to complete their studies.
Vice-Chancellor Dr Hilda Matarira yesterday told The Herald that
decided to suspend the law degree programme until problems
course are sorted out.
"We have stopped offering the law degree course
because since the current
semester began on 5 April law students have not
been attending lectures and
were causing problems to students in other
faculties following the
condemnation of the law programme by the Law Society
"The degree will not be offered until at such a time we
would have put our
house in order. We will have to sit down in the future to
see how to go
about it, but at the moment we have stopped the law degree
course," said Dr
She said the UZ was already working on how
to absorb the GZU law students.
"The UZ is working on the absorption of
our law students. As soon as they
are ready they will notify us as to how the
process goes on and when the
lectures will start," said Dr
There are fears that not all the 500 students will be absorbed
by the UZ as
the GZU was not stringent on entry requirements.
Matarira dismissed as baseless reports that all students at the
had abandoned lectures while awaiting the proposed merger of GZU
Masvingo State University.
She said lectures were going on as usual in
all other faculties, adding that
students would write their end of semester
exams from July 19 to 30.
"We reiterate our profound apologies to parents
and students in the law
faculty. As for other students, we urge them to
remain calm so that this
semester ends peacefully," Dr Matarira
In August last year, the Law Society of Zimbabwe said GZU law
would not be registered to practise as lawyers in the
The law society pointed out at non-available or inadequate
resources such as
a law library, shortage of experienced lecturers and the
enrolment criteria for some students as some of its major
Zim man nabbed in UK student visa scam
Last updated: 06/17/2004 02:09:58
A ZIMBABWEAN man was today
named as the ring leader of a massive student
visa scam as police swooped on
12 addresses in one of the largest
crime-busting operations ever seen in
Sixteen people were being questioned Wednesday after more than
took part in the dawn raids, the biggest staged so far under
Operation Maxim, which targets immigration crime.
raids were designed to bring to an end a huge immigration racket
have brought more than 1,000 people to London.
The suspects - 10 men and
six women - were detained on suspicion of
immigration offences and
The officers targeted addresses in the Upper Norwood,
Anerley, Mitcham and
Canning Town areas of London. Also visited were two
suspected bogus colleges
The swoops were timed to coincide
with action by South African police in the
port city of Durban.
those arrested in the London raids was a Zimbabwean-born naturalised
citizen in his 40s.
Detective Chief Inspector Steven Kupis, who led the
operation, said the scam
was one of the largest known to have been operating
in the capital.
He said those who had been brought to the UK under the
scam were mainly
South African, both black and white.
He added that
most had come to the UK in search of a better life but that
their status in
this country was now under threat.
MASOLA WA DABUDABU HOPEWELL
Hey Mr Spy!
updated: 06/16/2004 23:12:38
DURING my youthful days at secondary school at
Empandeni, we used to emulate
the film stars that thrilled us in movies
provided as part of our
entertainment by the school. Each Friday or Saturday
evening meant that we
assembled orderly in the Beit Hall to watch the week's
Not all the movies that were rented from some film agency in
thrilled us. As the duty to select the movies was at the hands of
students, there was no way we could blame the school authorities
us poor quality films. The school administrators, who were
moderated on the selection of the movies as they did not want
watch movies with some improper messages for our age.
times, we were subjected to very long and boring films that lacked any
to us. When such movies were rolling, the students would show
discontent by way of fidgeting noisily to the chagrin of the teacher
duty. It was always certain that a non-interesting movie would attract
noise reaction from us.
At the end of each film, students would
make its memories linger longer by
adopting the movie characters for their
own puerile purposes. Teachers and
students who had irritating characters
were given names of unrevered
characters from the boring films. Since the
school upheld a high level of
religious ethics, we were careful though not to
make small devils out of
This was our special way of showing
negative gratitude to those responsible
for bringing in the lousy movie. We
could not start throwing stones in
anger. We could not openly insult those
responsible since our scholarful
lives forbade slander, malice and insults.
We could not take any other
action as we were bound by school and church
regulations. We were meant to
observe the rules as they stood without
On some occasions, we watched very long and captivating movies
Spartacus. Long and interesting movies were preferred as that meant
time in the company of the few female students from the Home
branch. I should rush to explain that at our age, we derived some
motherly care from that company as the older girls from the Home
section pampered us in a manner very feminine.
would do justice to those who are not familiar with Empandeni
School by explaining its nature. During our time, it was a boys
with a small number of females who were enrolled for the
course. It goes without mentioning that the ratio of girls
to boys was
something like one to ten!
Anyhow, the issue is on movies and
There was a high occurrence of movies by James Bond. His exploits
intricate cases made small James Bonds out every one of us. You
all students claiming to be 007s or some other secret agent in
that mould. I
do not remember anyone volunteering to be the villain. We were
to be associated with villains, a trait that was discouraged by
The school's library opened more
avenues on the subject of fictitious spies.
We were able to read novels on
James Bond by Ian Flaming. We could borrow a
James Bond novel whose story
line we would have already watched in a movie,
just to compare the written
and the acted. We read other spy thrillers too.
James Hardley Chase novels
appealed to us. The Biggles series also took our
imagination to another
The older students took voluminous novels by Mario Puzzo of the
fame. They also read about the Mafia from many novels that
that subject such a s Robert Ludlum and others.
scope on spying and spies literally grew by leaps and bounds.
not have known that the fiction one got from movies and novels was
him or her for the real life drama that was in the making. I did
that life would be so full of spies and scoundrels. When I read the
novels or watched spy movies, I thought that the world was
itself with too much fiction and as a result it was ignoring
issues, such issues being the mundane but tricky ones of solving
and butter issues.
"There was a high occurrence of
movies by James Bond. His exploits in
solving intricate cases made small
James Bonds out every one of us"
MASOLA WA DABUDABU
later and so many mistakes to marvel at, I now see why our film
us so much on spy movies. I now appreciate why the librarian
at school made
it a point that he satisfied our demand for spy novels. We
prepared for the cruel life ahead. The teachers and priests at
not tell us directly that the road to living life to the
fullest was riddled
with spies and informers.
The Catholic priests had no courage to tell us
that spying was part of the
life we had pledged to take head on. Even the
novels did not hint that what
they gave us as fiction was derived from real
Now I appreciate the whole issue. The present political and
developments in Zimbabwe give me the cheek to say that spying on
an integral activity of a regime that lacks total approval from
of the population. During my secondary school days for example,
Smith regime wanted to know what the majority Blacks were thinking
relation to its own illegitimacy. The regime had a large network of
and informers. The regime did not trust the people, hence its
with spying on their activities.
It is not new
information that the regime classified people according to
levels, depending on who the people were and what they did.
department of the Smith regime worked full throttle to gather as
information as it could on all the people of Zimbabwe. In trying to
strict spy regimen, the regime ended up causing untold
inconveniences to the
The gathering of intelligence could not remain covert considering
nature of the spies and the diversity of the people to be spied on.
end of it all, everyone knew that they were being spied on. This led
spy network getting information that could not be used profitably by
The present regime, under the impression
that people who support the
opposition parties are being subversive, is
expanding its network of spies.
The spy network is made of many people who
end up spying on one another in a
desperate need to post a report. With so
many spies at large, there is a
great possibility that half the spies on the
regime's pay-roll spend most of
their time spying on the other half. One can
only imagine the piles and
piles of dossiers that are originated for each
person who is being spied on.
One wonders of the fate of so many files
conspicuously indicated 'for the
director's eyes only'. Who gets time to
In the spy movies, we saw technology being brought into the
Sophisticated gadgets would be employed to track a suspect to the
end. Some slick gadgets were used to bug telephones belonging to
It is the bugging issue that takes me wondering in awe imagination.
wonder what happens when a phone line is bugged. In the movies,
question was not adequately answered either. All we could hear was the
conversation, but we never could be shown how it ended up being
For dear Zimbabwe which has so
many perceived enemies of the state, who
carries out the bugging of the
telephone lines, assuming it happens? What
juicy staff would they be looking
for? In the process of bugging the
citizens' telephones, is it not possible
that some of the spies would use
the trivial information they are privy to
for their own selfish ends? Can
you imagine you and your friend chatting
absent mindedly about buying cheap
maize meal from the back-doors with some
spy catcher listening intently. You
get to your rendezvous and find the spies
having bought all your staff! This
is just a little bit about spies who do
not get much on their briefs!
The citizens of this country may ask how
the spies use the information
gathered from bugged phones? Is it within the
legal rights the spies to bug
those phones? Is it possible to detect that
one's telephone is bugged? Are
we protected by law from having our privacy
pried into by spies sent on a
fact finding mission by someone who is afraid
to lose their grip on power?
Is the bugging of telephones a reality or just a
myth? Is it paranoia that
drives us to fear prying spies?
Is the idea
if 'clean lines' as portrayed by American spy movies possible in
seeing that almost all people with phones are suspects in
against self-inflicted problems? Can one buy himself or
counter-bugging gadget? What should one say that may not attract
attention of the spies?
Assuming that the regime has unleashed a network
of spies to spy on its
citizens, does the regime not stand a chance of
information that would have been peddled by some
networks that oppose the way the regime is conducting
its business? Would it
not be possible that the ZANU-PF government is
desperately looking for
informers and recruiting some moles from the other
'side' as well? The
manner information on the citizens of this country is
going round makes one
fear the future. What could happen next?
people of this land need freedom of association. They need to talk
recognition of their right to freedom of speech. The people do not
suspect that they are being followed, tracked, listened to and
They need total freedom. It should be the duty of the spies to
information without causing alarm and despondency on the suspects. If
whole country is turned into a network of spies, the end result
Spies should be taught that it is not within their
interests to know too
much about someone who is less than a threat to
national security. Spy
agents should know that there is no prescribed way of
spying methods are all ususally unorthodox. Anything
unorthodox is not
normally admissible as evidence in any court of law. Our
spies should be
taught that opponents of the ruling party are not enemies of
the state. The
enemies of the state are those losers within the ruling party
the country's wealth through political impropriety and plain
The spies that spy on us should redirect their immense energies
safe-guarding the looting of the country's wealth by friends and
of the big fish within the ruling party. There is so much national
to protect from the hands of the thieving politicians within the
clique than stalking people who mind their own business!
PRESIDENT MORGAN TSVANGIRAI’S
TUESDAY MESSAGE TO THE PEOPLE OF ZIMBABWE
There is widespread anxiety in
Zimbabwe today about the future. In the
nine meetings, we had in the party’s provinces since the beginning of May, the
key question that keeps on popping up centres on the mind and intentions of
Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF about next year’s Parliamentary
People are asking me to explain
how a sitting regime that has usurped the people’s sovereignty and imposed its
will on the nation can boastfully preside over or supervise another national
Africa’s political tragedies are loaded
with regular doses of instability forced onto a people by rogue nationalists who
block essential freedoms and narrow political activity. What are you up to when
you shut the door to the sole democratic passage to
When a regime continuously denies
the people space for political activity, emotions run riot. People tend to
explore a range of possibilities, some of which could be
From Hwange to Chipinge,
Beitbridge to Binga, there is a chorus of disapproval with what has happened in
Zimbabwe in the past five years. The state
of our politics today is shamelessly unworthy.
What is causing anxiety are
options the regime is trying to foist onto the people. There is a deep feeling
that Mugabe and Zanu PF could foment an uprising and force the people, out of
desperation, to take part in the destruction of the little that remains in order
to open up the country and to start afresh.
When a regime seals off the
country and shrinks the democratic space to the barest minimum, what does it
expect the people to do? This question is coming up, often with increasing
resentment and bitterness, at our consultative meetings with our party
leadership all over the country.
The circumstances here have thrust
democrats, civil society activists and ordinary voters into a dilemma. Do you
prepare and participate in an election when you know the result? How do you
restore the people’s confidence in a climate of insecurity, fear and, above all,
when there is no guarantee that your vote can make a difference? Why waste
These are difficult questions,
especially when ordinary people say they are aware that any meeting of more than
five people requires the attendance and sanction of the police and the secret
service, the dreaded CIO. The people recognise the presence of a grossly
weakened judiciary and judicial process in their midst. They know the
limitations of Parliament. They are scared of the partisanship of the police
force and state security forces. They now understand poverty, hunger and
Along with the squeeze on the
media, internet service providers now have to sign contracts compelling the
state to tamper with private mail. In middle class circles, the subject has
dominated dinner table discussions and funeral wakes. Having lost on radio,
television and newspapers, intellectuals and academics are miffed at the
prospect of losing the only remaining outlet for debate and
Villagers and workers are arguing
that elections in Zimbabwe will turn their communities into
instant war zones. Memories of deaths, rape, mass displacements, burned down
homesteads and acts of unprovoked brutality are still fresh in their
Voters have legitimate concerns
about the violent nature of Zanu PF and Mugabe and the total denial of any
information that can empower them to make critical choices in an
Messages from radio and the public
media have incensed the nation to a level akin to open abuse. The people are
saying the regime has gone beyond the need to coerce and confuse. State monopoly
in the public information sector irks the majority because Zanu PF has
effectively taken over the control of the flow of ideas and debates on national
The people are saying they need to
protect themselves and their families from possible brain damage from a regime
that wishes to turn everybody into a docile recipient of unrelenting government
propaganda whose thrust is to deify a single nationalistic political
We as a party that is committed to
democratic change, through the democratic route, are averse to entertain that
option. We are counselling patience out of the conviction that instability
manifests itself through chaos, economic ruin and loss of
The MDC, through our intensive
mobilisation programme, is giving the people the necessary relief to these fears
and anxieties. We are making sure we leave no stone unturned. There is no room
for superficial assumptions. We are on the ground.
The latest consultative meetings I
had in Hwange, Matabeleland North on Saturday and in Gwanda, Matabeleland South
on Sunday made me realise the depth of the sentiment for change that has
overwhelmed this country. The feeling is irreversible.
I met a cross-section of officials
from as far afield as Binga, along the Zambezi River, Mangwe, 100 km north of Plumtree
and Toporo on the southern tip of the Tuli Block of Beitbridge. The two
provinces represent an embodiment of our rich historical diversity as a nation.
The residents of these areas have serious concerns about national integration
and development, which they say they have been denied by Mugabe and Zanu PF for
24 years. It is a big challenge for the MDC and to
Zimbabwe as a whole.
In Hwange, we conferred with the
Tonga of the
Zambezi Valley, the Xhosa of Mbembesi, the
Fengus of Tsholotsho/Silobela, the Shangwe, the Nambia of Dete, the Lozi of
Jambezi and Pandamatenga, the Ndebele, the Karanga and other Zimbabweans whose
ancestry migrated to the area from Zambia and
Malawi during the last century.
Delegates from these communities
have a simple message. They want political space. They want freedom. They want
peace. They want free and fair elections. They want to elect leaders of their
choice. What they have received from the Mugabe regime during the past five
years amounts to a form of sequential retribution and collective punishment for
rejecting Zanu PF in the 2000 Parliamentary election.
On Sunday, in Matabeleland South,
a similar picture emerged. The Venda, the Kalanga, the Ndebele, the
Sotho, the Tswana and the Karanga assembled to discuss the future. The people
expect a Zimbabwe with a cultural diversity that is
always celebrated. They yearn for a Zimbabwe where differences are tolerated
and where freedoms are jealously guarded. They are unhappy with the status quo.
I am happy to inform the nation that as
the MDC we are happy to report that we have united the entire nation against
tyranny. Tribalism has never been and is not an issue in our party. Our concern
is democracy and space. This was amply demonstrated at the last two meetings I
had with the people in Matabeleland. They all spoke about democratic
change and unity to remove Zanu PF from power.
Matabeleland South is unique in
that almost the entire young generation has migrated to
Botswana for economic security. They are
keen to come back home. They yearn to live with the families in their own
country. Their message, like that of their fellow patriots in Manicaland, in
Masvingo, in Harare, in the Midlands, in Mashonaland and in
Matabeleland North, is quite simple. Mugabe must restore the people’s basic
freedoms in order to have a free and fair election. They want
Now that we have covered three
quarters of the country with our campaign for revised electoral standards, I can
categorically state that Zimbabwe has no choice other than to get
out of the current political impasse through a legitimate election. No other
formula can assist us to resolve the burning crisis of governance that confront
The spirit for change remains
vibrant. The regime has failed to break the people’s confidence. They are ready
to exert pressure from all directions in order to de-mystify the arrogance of
the Mugabe regime. I am sure we shall succeed this time. We will stop Mugabe
from stealing another election. We will stop Mugabe from plunging our country
into further chaos.
The people are watching the regime
deploy war veterans and militias to their communities, attaching them to the
homestead of the chiefs, village heads and headmen.
They said they are noticing
discrepancies in the voter registration exercise. Those assumed to be opposition
supporters are being denied the opportunity to register. The practice is
prevalent in rural and urban Matabeleland, in parts of the
Midlands, in Masvingo and in Manicaland.
Our leaders at the grassroots level are compiling lists of those denied access
to register. The party will take up the issue as soon that exercise is
The people are very clear as to
what needs to be done to secure a free and fair election. They said they are
working flat out on a multiple counter-strategy to rid their areas of violence,
violent campaigns, intimidation and threats. That Zanu PF plan has outlived its
effect. The gains from our struggle far outstrip the current pain. The MDC, the
main political driver in that struggle for change, feels that pain. We know that
you, the people, the lifeblood of our beloved country, are hungry. We know that
you feel betrayed by the dictatorship after almost a century of fighting
colonialism and 24 years of independence with token
Our next port of call are the
three Mashonaland provinces. We shall be moving into this area soon with a
renewed determination to revive the spirit of 1999. I know the entire country
feels let down by the fake and inflated election results from previous voting
patterns in this region.
Many of our supporters in
Mashonaland, after five years of being held hostage by the regime, may have been
wondering if anything will ever change.
We know you are in despair, that
you wonder why we are talking about elections and electoral conditions when you
are thinking of how to raise a penny for bread or to pay school fees for your
After being brutalised for so long
by state agents your main concern is the creation of a good life for your
families, not to think about politics every day. Your plight is uppermost in our
minds. Together we shall meet in the next few days to exchange notes and work
out a plan.
Violence will never be an
acceptable component of the conduct of elections. Moreso, if the perpetrators
are shielded from justice.
Let me sign off with a message to
Zanu PF. Your noises will dissipate as you slowly realise that you are caught in
the gap between what Mugabe has claimed and what he can prove. Mugabe tried to
label us puppets, only to see our support surging upwards every day. You
attempted to blame targeted sanctions and imaginary foreign enemies, only to see
that the trouble is being brewed from inside your stable. You ruined the economy
through corruption and patronage.
Your anti-corruption plan and your
land redistribution route threaten to wipe out your own party. You have failed
to smash the MDC. You cannot destroy an idea.
By his own admission, Mugabe’s
succession experiment has collapsed. The economy remains on a free-fall. Your
propaganda campaigns have reached new heights, but Zimbabweans are refusing to
be boxed in by your dictatorship, no matter how crude the tactics have been. It
has never been our policy to pursue a campaign of retribution. We seek to gain
power legitimately and start to rebuild our dilapidated nation. It is an
escapable fact that the future lies in a democratic alternative. Feel free to
come and join others to enable the nation to rise against tyranny. We welcome
all. Already more than two thousand middle level officials and 10 senior
officials have quietly joined our ranks.
The MDC shall remain with the
Mhangura farm worker shot dead
MHANGURA farm worker was allegedly shot and killed by a security guard
Scornar Farm at the weekend after he was accused of trespassing and
The guard was looking after farm equipment left behind by a
commercial farmer after the property was acquired by the Government
resettlement last year.
Wellington Joe Shupikai, who was once
employed by the white ex-commercial
farmer, a Mr John Manning, collapsed and
died on the spot after he was
allegedly shot once in the neck by Asan Musa,
Shupikai was allegedly passing through the farmhouse complex
on his way to
work when he was ordered to stop and was questioned about why
he was passing
through the farm.
The chairman of the new plot owners
at Scornar and Broadlands farms, Cde
Onismo Takawira, yesterday said Shupikai
was quizzed about some missing
chemicals before he was shot
"There was bad blood between the white commercial farmer on the one
and Shupikai and the new farmers, on the other, because Shupikai had
the ex-farm owner's employ to work for the new farmers.
also no friendly co-existence between the former farm owners and
the rest of
the newly-resettled farmers," Cde Takawira said.
He said there were
endless heated disputes between newly-settled farmers and
commercial farmers at Scornar and Broadlands farms.
"Mr John Manning has
since left, but his brother, David, who is the former
owner of Broadlands
Farm, is still staying at the farm and working the land
we were allocated by
the Government," he said.
"We suspect they are now making up a story that
he (the man who was shot)
had stolen some chemicals, but the actual reason
behind the shooting was
that they were ordered by their employers not to
allow people resettled on
the farm to come near the farmhouses."
Takawira said complaints about endless disputes on the two farms
reported to the committee responsible for land allocation in
"If the Government does not intervene in
this matter, more people will be
killed by those who are armed," he
Mashonaland West police spokesman Inspector Paul Nyathi yesterday
police had not yet established the motive behind the shooting or
Shupikai had stolen anything.
"We are still carrying out
investigations and urge people who have
information on what was happening and
what could have happened on the
fateful day to come forward," Insp Nyathi
He said police arrested Musa following the shooting.
has since appeared in court charged with murder and he was remanded
custody to June 28," the police spokesman said.
Insp Nyathi said
police were closely monitoring the situation following
reports of further
disturbances at Broadlands Farm after the shooting.
comes barely a month after a newly-resettled farmer, Cde
Mike Mufambi, was
shot and killed at Riverside Farm in Odzi last month,
allegedly by a white
Another newly-resettled farmer, Tichaona Mafuruse, was
also shot on the
shoulder at close range in that incident.
45-year-old white commercial farmer, Peter Spero-Landos, has since
in court on charges of murder and attempted murder.
It is alleged that
after the Government had resettled new farmers on the
farm, there were
endless misunderstandings between Spero-Landos and the new
the day in question, Mufambi and Mafuruse had a misunderstanding
Spero-Landos over redrawn boundaries following sub-division of the
The commercial farmer opened fire and allegedly killed Mufambi and
Private schools turn to donations
MOST private schools in the country have now resorted to donations
to top up
fees set by the Ministry of Education, Sport and Culture, with more
percent of the parents complying.
In almost all cases, the
ministry set fees well below what the boards of
governors of the schools had
asked for and appeals for upgrades of fees have
The ministry said it was setting the levels on the basis of
the fees paid in
last year's third term and in many cases the fees for all
three terms of
this year has been about twice that amount.
the ministry has allowed the schools to raise funds from other
sources and to
seek donations from parents, but has made it clear that no
child may be
excluded if the parents have paid the set fee and that there
can be no
The schools have informed parents that either extra funds must
be raised or
the schools would have to change their nature dramatically or
The action of the ministry has seen two major developments at
almost all the
20 secondary and 40 primary schools affected.
are now having sight of quite detailed accounts and budgets, with
schools even revealing the salary scales of their teachers.
are generally only marginally higher than those enjoyed by
in the civil service.
Secondly, parents have taken the lead in
fund-raising with action committees
or associations formed at most of the
schools to mobilise parental support.
All schools have held at least one
meeting to explain the position to
parents with most having held more than
one as action committees report back
and seek support for fund-raising
Many of these meetings have seen a lot of ideas come up, some of
had to be shot down as a breach of conditions set by the
The schools, with only one or two exceptions, seem determined
further confrontations with the ministry and to ensure that
do is done within the parameters set by the
Generally parents' meetings have approved budgets set for this
have demanded, and been granted, the right to have far more say in
future budgets will be set.
All 60 schools are non-profit
organisations with totally voluntary boards
and parents forming a majority of
these boards, or even the entire board,
but some parents feel their views
need more weight.
A long-lasting change that the ministry's actions is
likely to see is far
more parental involvement in the schools, a move
generally welcomed by heads
Greater involvement of
parents was also desired by the minister, Cde Aeneas
Chigwedere, when the
crisis hit the schools at the beginning of this term.
One common proposal
offered at the parents' meetings has been for the
"extras" that the schools
give to be charged for separately.
However, at all but one school, this
has been universally rejected after
parents were told that the fees set by
the ministry were based on the full
services offered by the
It has also been generally accepted that such a difference in
be interpreted as coercion.
Only St George's College
has pursued this idea with parents invited to sign
one of two
The first is for those parents who wish to
The second, for the parents who wish to pay only the set fees,
the parent understands and accepts "that services provided by the
not included under tuition and boarding will either not be available
son or will be charged for separately".
Some parents have
objected strongly on the grounds that this breaches the
conditions set by the
ministry. The recommended declarations come from the
Association, not the school itself, and so are not binding
Amid the general upsurge of parental support, there have been
some parents, described as a "small minority", are attempting to
Cases have been reported of parents who not only
want a refund of anything
extra they paid in the first term, but also want
interest on this sum.
There have also been cases of parents, whose
employers have agreed to pay
not only the fees, but also the suggested
donation, pocketing the donation
and just paying the set fee.
Aussies call for Zimbabwe review
AUSTRALIAN cricket's players' union wants Zimbabwe
scrapped from the one-day
and Test arena unless a complete review of the
sport is conducted in the
The Australian Cricketers
Association adopted the tough stance at its recent
bringing it into line with the worldwide players' union,
International Cricketers Association.
The decision comes ahead of this
month's major International Cricket Council
meeting in London where the
Zimbabwe issue will dominate the agenda.
Although FICA will not be
represented in talks there, it hopes its view will
be taken into strong
consideration by the ICC's 10-member executive board.
In particular, the
ACA wants allegations of improper behaviour and
discrimination by the
Zimbabwe Cricket Union investigated, rather than
simply focusing on the
dilution of the standard of play as a result of the
boycott by 15 white
"Should ICC confine its review
to performance level only, it is recommended
that ZCU should be excluded from
the Future Tours Program -- both forms of
the game," the ACA said
"This would still enable Zimbabwe to compete in ICC events --
World Cup and
"Should the Zimbabwe Cricket Union be
able to demonstrate that they can
entice the majority of the 15 rebel players
back and that these players
would not be discriminated against, we would be
prepared to review our
The ZCU has agreed not to play its
remaining four Tests of the year after
its emergency meeting with the ICC and
officials from Australia, India and
South Africa in Dubai last week.
Why the waiting must end for Africa
'By the time Gleneagles is sealed off,
some 350,000 may have died in
declaration is about a year away, but it's pretty obvious
what Tony Blair is
preparing for us - and Africa - when he gathers world
leaders at the next G8
Sir Bob Geldolf's Commission for Africa is due to report by then.
will also hold the rotating presidency of the European Union, setting
agenda. And there is the small matter of a general election.
the three together, and we can see the Blair Plan to End Poverty in
2030 - or a similar idealistic goal and distant deadline. But if
Minister wants to make this his legacy, he faces a crucial
is a problem today. And today, Britain is failing.
By the time Gleneagles
is sealed off to the public, some 350,000 may have
died in Sudanese refugee
camps, according to the United States government.
Many of the deaths will be
due to simple hunger: charities are now trying to
feed them, and need
By Gleneagles, some 2.3 million Africans will have died from AIDS.
seeking to combat the syndrome are raising money right now -
seeking to make AIDS drugs cheaper need political backing right
Yet there is no sense of urgency in the UK government. At his
conference yesterday, Mr Blair declared his conscience clear
over Sudan by The Scotsman. "I believe we're doing all we
can," he said.
This is where the British government - in common with the
almost every other developed nation - is emphatically wrong.
The answer to
Africa does not lie in ten-year plans or commissions, but in a
steps that can be taken tomorrow.
Take aid. In 1970, Edward
Heath's government agreed to donate 0.7 per cent
of the nation's economy on
money to help the developing world - a United
Nations target chosen for
realistic chances of achievement.
Yet Britain will, this year, deliver
only 0.34 per cent of its national
wealth - not even half way. The difference
in these figures works out just
short of £13 million a day: money which the
UK government has promised to
poor countries, but has decided to withhold.
Money which, if delivered to
Sudan, could feed every one of the refugees who
So why the shortfall? "We're working towards a goal of
0.4 per cent by
2005," explains the Department for International Development
But why the wait? A cheque could be written tomorrow. The
closer to the truth. "There are a lot of pressures on the
spending round" -
a polite way of saying that Gordon Brown considers the
pledge on aid too
Again, it's a question of political
willpower. And this from a Chancellor
who has done more than almost anyone
else in the international stage to push
Third World development up the
Here is the "charity gap": world leaders love talking with
Africa, but when it comes to paying up, they start umming and
tight budgets. For as long as this gap exists, promises and
speeches will be
The next question is policies which
accompany aid already spent. When Clare
Short was running DFID, she made it
into her personal fiefdom - and was
easily taken in by dodgy African leaders
who saw her coming. Charities on
the ground in Rwanda point to Ms Short's
trust in General Paul Kagame in
Rwanda, giving him £46 million on the
putative condition of democracy and
freedom of speech.
This is the
same President Kagame who was "elected" last year with 96 per
cent of the
vote and his opposition in jail rather than parliament. So
Britain is sitting
back, paying up, while the conditions for armed
insurrection again take
"If Rwanda happened again today," said Mr Blair in the same 2001
would have a moral duty to act there." But not, it seems, in
Sudan - where
the unfolding tragedy is still arousing little more than harsh
Zimbabwe shows another failure. Mr Blair has
stood by as what was once the
"bread basket of Africa" slipped into economic
freefall, with farms turning
into desert and starvation close behind. The
debate about cricket is a
woefully unfit proxy for decisions about
These, aid agencies say, mark a snapshot of a prime minister
who talks the
talk on Africa - and genuinely believes in the ideal - but has
follow this up with effective policy. By means of cop-out, he
The problem is not specific to Mr Blair. When
government gives taxpayers'
cash to dictators, it invariably goes astray.
History has repeatedly shown
there is only one sure-fire answer to these
This is the rope which the people of China and India are
using to pulling
themselves out of poverty - yet this rope is denied to
Africa by the
The solution staring European leaders in
the face for years has been to
abolish the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)
which has become a new Iron
Curtain, cutting African farmers off from rich
The CAP slaps tariffs on food which Africa could sell to the EU
its farming industry the chance to grow, and denying millions the
earn a living. Not content with this, the CAP dumps subsidised
surplus in Africa, undermining local markets.
The CAP is
supposed to protect farming jobs in Britain and keep incomes
high - an
objective which, as any Scottish farmer will confirm, is by no
outright success. The CAP is a big part of reason why Africa
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development has shown
policy to help European farmers denies Africa £400 billion in lost
income each year. This is a staggering 14 times all the amount of aid
every country in the world.
The United States is equally as guilty
of farm subsidies. It has been
calculated that world protectionism costs
about £1 billion a year - enough
not just to feed the world's 60 million
cows, but fly them business class
around the world and give them £2,000
spending money at each stop.
The answer to Africa is staring us in the
face - and it doesn't take a
commission or a five-year plan to work it out.
To treat the scar on the
world's conscience which is Africa, abolish the
But this is politically unacceptable across Europe - so instead,
talk about international aid. By 2010. Or later. They promise,
starves, the cows absorb subsidy, we pay too much for food - and all
sake of farmers who are struggling anyway.
Whoever breaks this
cycle of misery can lay genuine claim to helping Africa.
Perhaps Mr Blair
will be the one who pulls the sword from this stone.
Anything less will
make the Gleneagles declaration the last word in an
epitaph of failure.
Double standards beggar belief
Linking reports and comments in newspapers (even when one is
selective and subjective) can cause clarity and confusion among the
grey cells and so it was in The Star of June 11.
main editorial you quite rightly warn poor people against
using their houses
as "collateral for a bank loan".
You warn that "life is not that
simple", indicating that banks
providing loans eventually want their money
back. With interest.
In other words, it must be realised that a
loan is not simply a gift.
Then we move onto your report about the
performance of African leaders
meeting the Group of Eight leaders - and we
read that the African delegation
made a "strong appeal for cancellation of
all their debts".
In the same breath they then "demand respect
the world's most powerful countries".
Come on African
brothers, "respect" is something that has to be
earned - and you gain no
respect when on the world stage you promote an
African culture of borrowing
money with no intention or ability to repay.
of nations are no different to those of the
individual with a bank loan
mentioned in the editorial.
Little wonder that a frustrated
President Thabo Mbeki remarked that
Africans are portrayed in some quarters
as "mendicants" (beggars).
Moving on, there's an article on the
Africa editor of The Economist
magazine, Robert Guest, author of the book The
He too warns of the tendency to abuse money in
Africa and bitterly
attacks black economic empowerment. In a nutshell: it
benefits the rich and
not the poor.
Young people do not
realise that wealth is something that has to be
created and is not acquired
by aspiring towards political power.
I have frequently said
affirmative action, transformation and black
empowerment will spell the ruin
of this country. Never mind the rest of
Africa, where economic morons such as
Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe have already
destroyed their economies.
I am pleased that 33-year-old Guest shares views which I acquired
33 years as a journalist and "field reporter", filling some six
during my travels.
He more or less translates my favourite Latin
adage: veritas vos
liberabit (the truth shall set you free) when he concludes
that, "... there
are ways forward. But denying the truth is not one of
Cultivating a begging-bowl mentality is no way to gain
Implementing realistic plans for the future - free of
enrichment of the elite - will cultivate respect.
But believe me, Africa cannot be left to its own development
There will have to be a massive influx of expertise from
developed countries to take the lead.
realistic and grateful and do not resent the fact that
there are those who
have expertise essential for the development which
Africa still only dreams
From: "Trudy Stevenson"
Sent: Thursday, June 17, 2004 3:56 AM
Monday in UK Parliament
Questions from Michael
Howard (leader conservatives) to Tony
Jun 2004 : Column 522
The G8 also focused on wider middle east questions.
I welcome its
Is it not the case, as the G8
"trade liberalisation is key to boosting global
What help are the British Government giving to ensure that
the Doha round
gets back on track in the way that the G8 envisaged?
finally to ask two specific questions about regions in Africa. First,
the horror that is felt in all parts of the House about the
developments in Darfur and welcome the extra £15 million in UK
that was announced last week. If Government bombing occurs in
not the Security Council authorise a no-fly zone to protect
population and consult those states with the capacity to enforce
restriction to urge them to do so?
Secondly, what discussions
on Zimbabwe took place at the G8? Will the Prime
Minister explain why the
limited sanctions that are in place do not prevent
fund-raising visit to Britain of the governor of the Reserve
Zimbabwe? Does that not illustrate the need for an urgent tightening
targeted EU sanctions to
include, in the words of the Movement for Democratic
Change in Zimbabwe,
"all individuals who play a leading role in
perpetuating the illegitimate
rule of Mugabe"?
Is that not an
excellent illustration of the need for Britain to demonstrate
clear and firm
leadership, in the G8 and elsewhere, in working with the
community to help to achieve the objectives of peace and
stability to which
we are all committed?
The Prime Minister: On the latter two points, we
work closely with the MDC
on the measures that we should take in respect of
Zimbabwe, although I am
afraid that these measures and sanctions, although we
have them in place,
are of limited effect on the Mugabe regime. We must be
realistic about that.
It is still important that we give every chance to, and
make every effort to
try to help, those in south Africa-the southern part of
pressure for change on the Mugabe regime, because there is no
the people of Zimbabwe until that regime is
From The Sunday Times (UK), 13 June
Kofi Annan's son faces probe in
UN oil scandal
The son of the United
Nations secretary-general is to be investigated over
his alleged role in a
company that negotiated to sell millions of barrels of
Iraqi oil under the
discredited UN oil-for-food scheme. Kojo Annan faces
questions about a
conflict of interest as the oil scheme was ultimately the
his father Kofi, who heads the UN. Financial investigators
for the Iraqi
government are to look into apparent links between Kojo and a
negotiated a contract to sell Iraqi oil as part of its wider
probe into deals
struck during Saddam Hussein's regime. The UN oil-for-food
programme - which
allowed Saddam to trade controlled amounts of oil to buy
food and other
essential supplies - is alleged to have been corruptly
administered by the
former Iraqi leader and the UN. The allegations centre
on an Iraqi oil deal
worth $60m (about £33m) that was lined up by Hani
Yamani, the son of Sheikh
Yamani, the former Saudi oil minister. The
business relationship between Hani
Yamani and Kojo Annan represents the
coming together of two of the world's
most influential families. In his
mid-twenties, Annan became a director of
Yamani's main company, Air Harbour
Technologies (AHT). Documents seen by The
Sunday Times show that Yamani
agreed to sell 1m barrels of Iraqi oil -
through another of his companies
Hazy Investments - to a Moroccan company,
Samir, in September 2001. He was
given a further option to sell another 1m
A source close to the transaction said: "This was a major
coup for Yamani at
the time as it was critical to his main business as funds
from the Hazy deal
were planned for AHT. Kojo was a director of AHT." Yamani
is alleged to have
said Kojo was important to the Hazy deal. Kojo, however,
says he had no
knowledge of Yamani's oil negotiations. He firmly states,
lawyers, that he ceased being a director of AHT in July 2001,
before the oil deal was signed. His lawyers say they have seen a
resignation that proves his leaving date, but Kojo Annan has
release it to The Sunday Times. Although the Hazy contract for the
oil was agreed, Yamani now says the deal never went ahead. Speaking
home in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, he said: "We didn't have an allocation
the Iraqis, we were selling the oil on behalf of someone else. I
actually traded a barrel of Iraqi oil." The investigators will now have
establish when Annan resigned and may seek evidence from other
executives of AHT. In late 2000, the majority of the AHT board
after several projects failed to materialise, but Annan's
renewed in January 2001. Annan insists he only ever received
payments. He also points out that when he was last accused of
father's name in an oil-for-food contract he was
After leaving university in 1994, Annan worked for Cotecna,
a company that
specialised in inspecting and verifying oil shipments. He
became a Cotecna
consultant through the Sutton Group, a company he set up in
Nigeria. In 1998
the UN began tendering a multimillion pound contract to
oil-for-food programme. This involved monitoring shipments of
medicine being imported into Iraq, and checking oil tankers as they
port. Annan stopped acting as a consultant for Cotecna six weeks before
won the UN contract. An internal UN investigation found Annan had
knowledge or involvement in the Cotecna bid. A spokesman for the
said: "Kojo Annan's activities concerned exclusively Cotecna's
Nigeria and Ghana, and he was not involved in any of Cotecna's
involving the United Nations or Iraq." Annan joined AHT in 1999,
after his father was elected UN secretary-general. The company was
set up to
build airports and hotels and is wholly owned by Yamani. The
close links to Hazy Investments which, records indicate, signs
pays employees and consultants on AHT's behalf. Both companies
ultimately based in the same office in Nicosia, Cyprus. Annan was
to join the board of AHT at a time when Yamani was hoping to
company's profile by hiring well-known figures, such as a former
of Costa Rica and Maurice Strong, a senior UN official and special
Kofi Annan. One source close to AHT said: "Hani Yamani liked to
himself with the great and the good. Kojo was a very passive
executive and I
always thought he basically lent his name to the firm. The
obviously has a certain presence when you are putting together
One of the company's biggest projects was the
building of a new airport in
Harare, Zimbabwe. It attracted controversy over
allegations that the company
had won the contract through its association
with Leo Mugabe, Robert Mugabe'
s nephew. During 2001, AHT was in trouble and
Yamani allegedly stopped
paying a number of key staff. It was against this
background that the oil
deal was negotiated. The Sunday Times has seen a
contract drawn up between
Hazy and Samir, a Moroccan company owned by
prominent Saudis, for the sale
of oil from Kirkuk in Iraq in September 2001.
At the time, Iraq's oil
exports were strictly controlled by the oil-for-food
programme. It is
claimed Saddam handed out vouchers giving allocations of oil
rates in return for favours, including political support
outside Iraq and
the supply of goods not permitted by UN sanctions. A
spokesman for Kofi
Annan declined to comment on Kojo's relationship with
Yamani. However, he
said: "The secretary-general has categorically stated
that neither he nor
his son had any connection with the awarding of a
contract to Cotecna."
The original story follows:
From The Daily
News, 28 November 2000
President linked to airport
President Mugabe has been linked to the payment of unauthorised
during the construction of Harare's new international airport. As
project nears completion, a serious rift has emerged between Air
Technologies (AHT), the main contractor, and local representatives
government officials. The airport project has become a tale of cronyism
has involved the United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan's son,
Mugabe's nephew, Leo Mugabe, and Yamani, the son of a famous and
former Saudi Oil Minister, Sheikh Ahmed Yamani. It now emerges that
Yamani, the owner of AHT, has named President Mugabe and the Speaker
Parliament, Emmerson Mnangagwa, as being among Zimbabwean top officials
alleges to have paid a total of US$3 million ($165 million) to ensure
his company won the $5 billion tender to design and build the new
The names of the President's nephew, Leo Mugabe, two former
Ministers Simon Khaya Moyo and Enos Chikowore, Higher Education
Herbert Murerwa, as well as the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps in
Halimeh, Ambassador of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation
on the list of people to whom payments were allegedly made by
representatives in Harare in circumstances which he now challenges.
was at the time Minister of Finance.
Yamani alleges that
his representatives in the country, Heena Joshi and Tony
Kates, claimed they
also made disbursements to the former Editor of The
Herald now chairman of
Zimbabwe Newspapers (Zimpapers), Tommy Sithole, Obert
Director of Domestic and International Finance in the
Ministry of Finance, Dr
Sam Marume, Deputy Secretary in the Ministry of
Transport, and Amos Marawa,
former Director of the Civil Aviation Authority
of Zimbabwe (CAAZ). A number
of junior-ranking civil servants are alleged to
have also benefited. It is
alleged that a total of US$190 000 was paid to
Leo Mugabe, while Murerwa,
Chikowore and Khaya Moyo received US$24 803,
US$171 456 and US$106 832,
respectively. Yamani alleges that Joshi and Kates
claim that Ambassador
Halimeh had received US$10 000, with Sithole receiving
US$21 000 and
Matshalaga being paid the least amount of all, only US$1 250.
"Ambassador Halimeh has been demanding much more money from me
over the past
two years, over and above the large sums that he has been
receiving. This is
extremely sad for me because I genuinely like him and I
will continue to care
for him and his family in his serious illness." The
PLO ambassador said: "I
know Yamani. He is a friend of mine. I know the
gentleman very well, but I
know nothing about the payment." If the story was
published he had a way of
dealing with the people, Halimeh said, throwing
diplomatic caution to the
wind. Yesterday Heena Joshi denied she ever paid
the named people anything.
"I resigned from the company after I realised
that Hani Yamani was conducting
himself outside the boundaries of ethical
business practice." Leo Mugabe
said: "I have nothing to do with AHT. All I
did was to introduce one of the
company's representative to influential
people in the country and that was
six years ago. That is an old story. The
problem is that you don't like
President Mugabe and end up painting us with
the same brush. I am a capable
businessman who has a right to receive
commissions, but on this one I did not
Meanwhile Marawa denied ever receiving any money,
saying: "I have not been
paid by anybody even if I am listed in those
documents. At the time when I
was at CAAZ, we did not recommend that company.
I have not received money
from them." When contacted for comment, Matshalaga
also denied he had
received any payment. "I don't know what to say," he said.
"I can only say
my name was possibly added on the list because I was one of
opposed to the project. If I was supposed to receive any payment,
is my money? I never received any money. It's always the small
suffer. Small fish also need protection. I was one of the people
opposed to this project. Unfortunately, I cannot confirm or
anything." Sithole, the Zimpapers chairman, who is abroad, refused
comment when he was contacted yesterday. He asked The Daily News to call
on Thursday when he returns. Mnangagwa and Murerwa are also out of
country, while Chikowore and Khaya Moyo could not be reached for
last night. Yamani explains the full details of the alleged payments
letter he wrote to President Mugabe a year ago. He complains that he
US$3 million - or $165 million in local currency - through
Zimbabweans. Zanu PF's trading company, Zidco (Pvt) Ltd, was named as
official agent for AHT in the country. Yamani states in his letter to
that his Cyprus-based company paid a total US$20 000 (Z$1 100 000)
Zidco for the construction of the President's residence in Zvimba.
was allegedly built by Yugoslavs who were paid by AHT. Yamani says
of US$1 200 000 (Z$66 000 000) was paid directly to Zidco through
personal bank account of Jayant Joshi on the instructions of
Jayant Chunilal Joshi and his brother, Manharlal Chunibal Joshi,
with Mnangagwa, directors of Zidco. It is alleged that a total of
(Z$ 2 750 000) was donated by Yamani to Zanu PF through Jayant
account. Heena is the daughter of Jayant Joshi. The Joshis, the key
in Zidco, together with Mnangagwa, retain strong personal links with
Mugabes. Heena Joshi is a close friend of the President's wife, Grace.
sits on the board of the First Lady's charitable organisation,
Children's Rehabilitation Trust.
In the letter to Mugabe,
which is dated 15 July 1999, Yamani, alleges that
there was a "dirty
conspiracy" that had been actively seeking to destroy his
President Mugabe and his family in order to hide certain
transactions. Describing Mugabe as a father, Yamani enclosed in
the letter to
the President the list of officials to whom payments were
allegedly made. "It
is crucial for me that you know all the facts, and that
my reputation with
you and your family is restored," Yamani appeals to
Mugabe. "You are more
able than I am to determine the good sheep from the
bad ones in your flock
and I have no choice but to come to you in the
present circumstances for help
and protection." Yamani alleges that Kates,
Heena and Saleh Miri, AHT's
former architect, who designed the new terminal,
acted together and
"committed many administrative and financial
irregularities". Most intriguing
in the letter is Mnangagwa's alleged role
in organising and handling, through
Zidco, funds for Mugabe's residence, and
the payment of sums of money out to
Halimeh "to cover his living and medical
expenses". Mnangagwa in his personal
capacity was allegedly paid Z$2 331
505. Yamani says he intended to go into a
joint venture with the First Lady
to construct a $15 million hotel. Yamani
says he had asked Heena Joshi to
locate an appropriate piece of land near the
airport for the hotel. "We
intended to lend the money to the First Lady who
would buy the land and we
would build the hotel using our own equity and
project financing," he says.
Yamani says sub-standard work was uncovered on
the airport project and the
contractor was forced to correct it against heavy
criticism from Kates and
"his allies in government and the representative of
the contractor" who said
redoing the job would delay the project. "It seems
we were hurting their
personal financial interests," says
Yamani says to Mugabe: "Normally, we would take Heena to
mismanagement and fraud and we can stop her this way, but this is
in our present case as it would hurt Zimbabwe and your family.
knows these facts and she is using them to her own benefit. We
are now told
that the funds which were intended to pay the Yugoslav
contractor for your
residence, with the contribution of my company at a total
one million United
States dollars up to the end of the airport project, were
He said his company had already lost US$3 million on the
and it stood to lose much more after two of his architects
kicked out of the country". "Most important to me is my
you and the First Lady, which is worth more to me than
money and fame,"
Yamani says in his letter. "I respect you and I am honoured
by your trust in
me. I am a victim of plotters who derive all their power
from you, but who
deal for their personal ambitious agenda." Yamani says his
last meeting with
Mugabe was in July 1998 and the First Lady in September
1998 in Paris. He
says attempts to come to Zimbabwe and accompany the
President on a tour of
the new airport had been blocked by Heena Joshi. "I
was also supposed to go
to Dubai in late 1998 to assist the First Lady on her
visit, but I was told
by Heena Joshi that the visit was cancelled by the
First Lady herself. It is
an honour for me to meet with Your Excellency and
the First Lady, especially
since I need to discuss problems on the airport
project and I now realise
that the Joshis did not want such a meeting to
What we can learn from Zimbabwe
June 16, 2004
worthwhile to put our political system's fundamental principles
perspective. This is particularly so after the leaders' debates,
to be as much Survivor as substance.
For the underlying realities of
"redistribution," the principle on which
most modern democracies -- including
Canada -- are built, one might examine
the situation in Zimbabwe. There,
President Robert Mugabe decided to
"redistribute" the land of white farmers
to the oppressed black minority (in
fact his own political supporters). The
result has been the implosion of
what used to be a highly efficient
agricultural system. Benighted
Zimbabweans now rely for their food on the
international community. This
further "redistribution" from Western taxpayers
-- none of whom,
significantly, voted for it -- serves to keep Mr. Mugabe in
What similarity does this pernicious situation have with Canada
Western democracies? Plenty. Only here the expropriation is kept
"tolerable" levels: that is, short of outright economic
While the conventional wisdom tells us Western capitalism
Communism, does nobody find it unusual that Western
political systems are
virtually all based on the fulfillment of one of the
main objectives of The
Communist Manifesto: from each according to his
abilities, to each according
to his needs?
"Redistribution" is such a
reasonable sounding word. The Western market
economies "distribute" wealth
among the "factors of production," and since
this distribution is obviously
unfair, Solomon-like governments must step in
with a more equitable
Such thinking amounts to one of the great con jobs of
all time. The tendency
of governments to tax and spend on an increasingly
grand scale -- even
through the Thatcher and Reagan "revolutions" -- is one
of the most
remarkable trends in political history.
government has grown overwhelmingly as a predatory entity which
buys votes by
robbing Peter to pay Paul and Mary. The trick is that it also
robs Paul to
pay Peter and Mary, and Mary to pay Peter and Paul. Its skill
is to implicate
everybody in the great potlatch.
As well as being monumentally
inefficient, such a system is fundamentally
immoral. We are told that there
is a trade-off between freedom and equality,
but it is in fact a trade-off
between freedom plus wealth and forced
equality. Perfect equality is
synonymous with perfect poverty. And perfect
notion that the system in practice consists primarily of
transfers from the
rich to the poor is bogus. As noted, it consists
overwhelmingly of complex
and minus-sum transfers within the middle class.
Its major beneficiaries also
include corporate welfare bums such as the big
auto companies and "national
champions" such as Bombardier. There are also,
of course, myriad fountains,
fixtures and finagles installed from Sea to
Shining Sea to beautify local
politicians' electoral chances.
As for the funds that reach "the poor,"
the notion that they are
unequivocally beneficial is far from clear. A
redistributive system that
goes beyond temporary provision for those in
trouble through no fault of
their own encourages self-destructive feelings of
entitlement. It cultivates
envy as a political principle. It discourages work
and attendant feelings of
Also, we might note that the gap
between the incomes of the richest and the
poorest remains remarkably stable
over time. The only difference is that the
incomes of the poorest
increasingly consist of welfare. They become trapped.
meanwhile also creates a disincentive to work and invest
from the point of
view of the productive. This again indirectly robs the
The fact that all developed countries have similar levels of
expenditure in no way validates the mushy egalitarian principles
Western democracy. It merely indicates how successfully politicians
been in imitating every intrusive scheme adopted anywhere on
Sensible individuals should willingly pay taxes proportional to
incomes to maintain minimal governments, but by what token is it
that somebody with more talent and application earns more than
Meanwhile who says the rich will be inclined to
hoard their incomes? Public
esteem is much more important than naked wealth
for most normal people,
especially talented ones, and the surest way to
achieve public esteem is via
acts of benevolence. That is certainly the
history of the great capitalists
from Andrew Carnegie to Bill
Ah, say the redistributors, but this leaves benevolence too much
at the whim
of individuals. Better, apparently, that it should be at the whim
The remarkable feature of the system of fettered
capitalism -- which is so
cherished by politicians -- is that the productive
keep producing, albeit it
at a lower level than they might do under a lighter
tax burden. The
lack-of-principle involved was recognized by the 17th century
minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert, who gave us the immortal analogy of
geese while keeping down the hissing. That's less stupid than Mr.
killing of the golden goose, but it's almost as immoral.
National Post 2004
Zimbabwe condemns US sanctions on Cuba
¡¡HARARE, June 16 (Xinhuanet) -- The Zimbabwean
Wednesday condemned the long-standing US economic embargo on
Washington's extra territorial application of its laws on the island
Foreign Affairs Minister Stan Mudenge in a wide-ranging
conference also condemned recent US threats to Cuba made under theguise
Washington's war on terrorism.
"We call on the
international community to join us in condemning
such unilateralism as well
as any other sanctions imposed by individual
countries outside the framework
of the United Nations," he said.
He said it was disheartening
to note that Cuba continued to face
threats to its sovereignty and
territorial integrity and the right to
determine its own
The people of Cuba were facing the threat of enhanced
sanctions, propaganda media campaigns, discouragement of tourist
denial of visas, among other things, he said.
"Zimbabwe is concerned at recent hints or threats of unspecified
taken under the pretext of the war on terrorism," he said.
Mudenge hoped a solution would soon be found through mediation by
international community, which has supported Cuba's cause for the past
Zimbabwe would continue to render its support to
multilateral efforts, and to the just cause of the Cuban people, he
Mugabe Addresses AIDS Conference
Jun 2004, 16:42 UTC
Zimbabwe's President, Robert Mugabe, has
addressed the country's first
national HIV/AIDS conference in Harare.
his address, President Mugabe spoke about the progress made in the
against HIV/AIDS since the first HIV case was diagnosed in Zimbabwe in
Mr. Mugabe said while a lot of ground has been covered in terms of
Zimbabweans aware of the virus, a lot still has to be done.
applauded the recent launch of an anti-retroviral drug program, which he
can only reach a maximum of 10,000 people because of a lack of funds.
Mugabe stressed the need for more resources and for the building of what
called "sustainable partnerships" to enable more people to benefit from
program. He also called for voluntary counseling and testing centers
spread out to the rural areas.
Mr. Mugabe said because of the
limited access the majority of Zimbabweans
have to modern medicines,
traditional medicine could also play a role.
"There is a need also to
compliment expensive modern ARVs [anti-retroviral
drugs] by finding a role
for effective traditional medicine in AIDS care,"
Mr. Mugabe. "After all, the
majority of our people still rely on and could
benefit from traditional
medicine as long as the proposed remedies pass and
I emphasize, pass the
necessary medicines control tests."
The president's announcement was
welcomed by Professor Gordon Chavunduka,
the president of the Zimbabwe
National Traditional Healers Association, who
said his organization has tried
for years to work with the Health Ministry
to combat HIV/AIDS, but had met
with stiff resistance. He said some
traditional healers can ease the symptoms
of AIDS but, like modern medicine,
they have not come up with a
President Mugabe also expressed his appreciation for the assistance
has received in the fight against AIDS from multilateral
the United Nations. Noting that there are more than 300
organizations and community-based organizations in the
country, he called
for a more harmonized approach to helping AIDS victims by
duplication and avoiding the unnecessary waste of
"Those involved in HIV/AIDS programs need to work in a
which strengthens the agreed framework of what is now
known as the "Three
Ones", namely, one national plan for the fight against
HIV and Aids, one
co-coordinating authority and one monitoring and evaluating
Former Zambian President Kenneth Kaunda will
address the conference
Thursday. He was one of the first people to go public
about AIDS when his
son died of the disease in 1986.
Mugabe's man accuses 'lying' UN
President Robert Mugabe's government accused UN officials of
lies" about Zimbabwe today, deepening a rift between the country
Foreign Minister Stan Mudenge said he had summoned
the UN World Food
Programme representative to his office yesterday to explain
compiled by one of its officials that outlined increasing crime
lawlessness in the troubled southern African nation.
"There is a
persistent trend of malicious intent on the part of some UN
Zimbabwe who are deliberately demonising this country and its
through lies and misinformation," Mudenge said in the
"It is unfortunate the United Nations in Harare
continues to tolerate people
who tarnish the name of Zimbabwe. This is
unacceptable to the government."
The report warning of a sharp rise in
violent crime - including street
robbery, rapes and vehicle hijacking - was
compiled by Zimbabwean WFP
official Denis Mpanda, whom Mudenge said was
"He just sits down, his hangover gets to him, and he
puts it out," Mudenge
He also complained about an official at
the UN Development Programme who
previously described Zimbabwe as "a no-go
country," where policing was
ineffective and the lives of UN personnel were
Mudenge accused UN officials sympathetic to the opposition
Democratic Change of using their positions to promote a
with "evil intent" against the country.
comments came after UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's special
humanitarian needs in southern Africa cancelled a planned trip to
saying neither Mugabe nor his top officials were available to meet
Africans 'see little to
|A survey in Africa suggests Nigerians and Zimbabweans feel
especially pessimistic about their own countries.
The study by international polling agency, Globescan,
also indicates that more than a third of Africans feel worse off this year
compared with last.
In Zimbabwe, just 3% of those asked think life is
In Nigeria, 75% of people think the country is
heading in the wrong direction, with 66% thinking it is more corrupt than a year
Remarkably, another survey conducted by the New
Scientist last year, suggested Nigerians might also be the happiest people in
The Globescan survey also shows that most Africans do
not believe that their national governments reflect the will of the people, and
have more trust in their religious leaders.
There is some optimism in Kenya, where the vast
majority of Kenyans believe corruption is declining, and two-thirds of Ghanaians
think their government reflects the will of the people.
However, 80% of
Zimbabweans and 66% of South Africans feel their countries are more corrupt than
a year ago.
One thousand people took part in the study in each of
eight countries: Egypt, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa,
More than 90% of those asked, see Aids and the spread
of diseases as serious problems for them and their families
Half of Africans asked, feel the world is going in
the wrong direction. They feel positive about the United States but negative
about trade, Aids, jobs and poverty
Do you feel there are grounds for optimism in African
countries? Do you agree with survey's conclusions? Let us know using the form
As a Zimbabwean I feel the result has been rigged -
who are the 30 people out of a thousand who feel the country is getting better?
Thirty out of 12 million would be a better bet, that is Mugabe and his cabinet
who are chasing UN food programme from the country saying we will have a better
harvest. And for better measure 12 million is the rough population of
Thembelani Ndlovu, London, UK
As for corruption, the Zimbabwe and South Africa
cases may reflect opposition to the government and not the real situation. It
will be more important to know how the respondents were selected. Elites and
people from urban areas are more likely to oppose ruling
Richard Minja, Tanzania
There is nothing to cheer about in Zimbabwe, except
that the coming of the Lord is near. Corruption is rife, hunger is everywhere,
and few are on the government's anti-retroviral support system. The government
does not reflect the will of the majority nor do the people have a
John Mbiri, Harare, Zimbabwe
Corruption, though being investigated, some big guns
are being left out. Only a few are surviving. The rest of us are just existing
and one does not know what to eat or drink the next hour. Things are just
difficult for most of us.
Goddie Godfreys, Gweru Zimbabwe
As a Nigerian, I am optimistic that someday things
will change for the better but there needs to be major reforms in the government
before that will happen. There might be a lot of bloodshed and difficulty in
Africa, but it is always darkest before dawn. Nigeria is a very corrupt country
but Nigerians are good people and someday that goodness will be seen by the
Grace, Plateau State, Nigeria
Why would Africans be happy when they see all the
money been spent by their own countries and the G8 on weapons when less than 1%
of that money would stop a tragedy from happening in Sudan this
How unscientific. Nigeria is a country with a
population of millions and this report suggests that a thousand people will
adequately reflect their thoughts. Utter rubbish!!!! We already know where we
think Nigeria is going. Please don't use stupid statistics to emphasise
Uzo, USA, Nigeria
In Nigeria, there is every cause for pessimism
because there is hardly anything visible to make the citizens feel contented
about the country ranging from declining infrastructure, lack of job to other
things like insecurity and corruption. The citizens have a habit of keeping
themselves happy by all means since many of them have not seen better days in
the past, hence the result that says they are the happiest in the world. It is
high level corruption that has been the bane of these happy
Paul Ohia, Lagos, Nigeria
As a born and bred Zimbabwean I do not believe that
there are any grounds for optimism in Zimbabwe. Ten years ago we Zimbabweans
were full of hope but now corruption and Aids spread like wildfire. Land lies
fallow while our people starve. The flow of tourists has all but dried up while
some of the world's greatest wildlife is being destroyed. Trees are falling
never to be replaced. Those that want to make things better are stamped on by
the authorities. How can anyone find hope in these times of
Don, London, UK
I believe that Africa as a continent is going through
a transitional phase in its journey to development. While bad governments may
prevail now, the chances are that as sources of media permeate the continent and
people are made more aware of their rights, the nations will (over time)
surmount these obstacles and free stable democracies will prevail. However, to
achieve stability the process must mature intrinsically, without external
military help. Meanwhile, kudos to the Nigerian people for being amongst the
happiest in the world.
Sunava Dutt, Philadelphia, USA
As Africans we have every reason to be cheerful. New
technology has open new doors for us; corrupt leadership are a minority,
democracy is taking hold; research is ongoing for a cure for Aids; through the
internet we are learning more; and getting connected. We should be optimistic!!!
Francis Stevens George, Oslo, Norway
The statement Africans feel good about the USA must
be some kind of a joke designed to make the US feel good. Africans never feel
good about imperialists or their lackeys.
Fidel M, Oxford
Mail and Guardian
Malnutrition hampering Zimbabwe's Aids
16 June 2004 10:56
and malnutrition are undermining Zimbabwe's battle against HIV and
about 700 delegates heard at a conference that opened in Harare
Doctors who have been examining the impact of anti-retroviral
in Zimbabwe have found that the anti-Aids drugs are too
expensive in a
country where some three-quarters of the population live in
"The issue of poverty ... is one of the factors limiting the
ARVs," said Phineas Makurira, who spoke on behalf of the doctors at
first national conference on HIV and Aids to be held in the southern
"It is estimated that about 5 000 patients are
currently on ARVs in
Zimbabwe, although this might be an underestimate," said
Aids expert Christine Chakanyuka.
They are a tiny
fraction of the estimated 1,8-million Zimbabweans living
with HIV and
The three-day conference aims to come up with the best strategies
practices for combatting Aids, which kills an estimated 3 000 Zimbabweans
"I'm quite optimistic that this is not going to be a talking
Panganayi Dhliwayo, a member of the organising committee and health
official, told a press conference.
He added that, contrary to
what had been said about the high price of drugs,
many families in Zimbabwe
could in fact afford the prices charged for ARVs,
the drugs that help to slow
down the progression of HIV/Aids, at some
000 dollars [$28] a month you don't even need free treatment,"
He attributed the price reduction to the local manufacture of
anti-retrovirals. "People are not aware that the cost of ARVs has
so much," he said.
Nutritionist Percy Chipepera told
delegates meanwhile that recent studies
had shown that malnutrition in
Zimbabwe was exacerbating the condition of
"Malnutrition affects 90% of HIV/Aids patients (and) ... it is
responsible for 60% to 80% of Aids deaths," he said.
last three years Zimbabwe has experienced a serious food shortage
to droughts and the chaotic land reforms that saw the seizure of
white-owned commercial farms handed over to landless blacks.
are also becoming less productive due to HIV-induced illnesses.
Robert Mugabe's government plans to roll out free ARVs to some 171
by end of next year.
But the health ministry's Chakanyuka hinted that it
may be unable to meet
that deadline, saying "we are limited by
Another health official said attention should not be focussed
on ARVs alone.
"We need to provide a comprehensive package to manage
HIV/Aids in the
country, not to just provide ARVs," Owen Mugurungi
With about one in four adults infected by HIV, Zimbabwe ranks among
countries worst hit by the pandemic. An estimated 166 000 new HIV cases
registered last year, according to Chakanyuka.
Zimbabwe's Aids statistics are not all gloomy, health official
reporters. He said now that HIV figures were beginning to
deserved a pat on the back.
"Now that it (HIV infection) has stabilised
and is starting to go down, I
think we should congratulate ourselves and say
that our efforts are bearing
fruit," Dhliwayo said. - Sapa-AFP