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Chinese planes grounded as Airzim cancels London-Harare flight

      By a Correspondent

      LONDON - AIR ZIMBABWE'S Saturday flight from London to Harare has been
cancelled as the national carrier struggles with failing aircraft. Staff
were busy calling passengers yesterday to avoid incurring huge costs of
having to put them up in hotels if they turned up at Gatwick Airport, from
where the airline operates.

      "I have just received a call from Air Zimbabwe and I was told that the
flight has been cancelled," one distraught passenger told "Sometimes you want to remain patriotic but then in
the process you keep on being impeded. I'm beginning to get tired of all
this really."

      Airline staff were also said to be busy trying to secure seats for
some of their passengers on other flights run by companies such as British

      Meanwhile the airline announced in Harare it has temporarily grounded
two of the three new planes sourced from China.
      The MA60 planes are said to have developed mechanical faults. David
Mwenga, the airline's spokesperson said the two planes would be back in the
air once spare parts have been secured either from the United States of
America or Canada.

      It is not clear how long it will take for the national carrier to
procure the spare parts. Air Zimbabwe, whose standards have been nose-diving
over the past few years, has lately been experiencing problems with its
aircraft resulting in flight cancellations, especially on the Harare-London
route, leaving hundreds of passengers stranded. Already spare parts were
being sourced to allow the servicing of the plane that serves the lucrative
London-Harare route.

      "The maintenance work that is required necessitated that we purchase
spare parts from various sources from the United States and that we consult
with Pratt & Whitney of Canada, the manufacturers of the engines, as one
area that needed maintenance is the aircraft fuel nozzles," Mwenga is quoted
in the state-controlled Herald newspaper as saying.

      "The majority of spares have since arrived while a few more are
expected today. When all the requisite spare parts have arrived, the rest of
the maintenance work should take our engineers a few hours to complete and
we expect the two air-crafts to be back into service by tomorrow."

      Air Zimbabwe has had to combine domestic flights to Bulawayo and
Victoria Falls to be serviced by the remaining MA60, while regional flights
would be plied by the airline's Boeing 737.

      An employee who spoke on condition of anonymity said mismanagement at
the national airline was the major reason for the crippling crisis at Air
Zimbabwe. "Management need to understand that an aeroplane makes money when
it is in the air and not on the ground. The London-Harare route is so
lucrative but where is the money being generated from there going, it is not
being ploughed back into improving the service. It will be a sad day if one
of these good days we are going to wake up without a national airline to
talk about like our colleagues in other African countries."

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Pretoria Research Institute Faults President Mbeki in Continued Zimbabwe Collapse


By Blessing Zulu
      Washington, DC
      16 June 2006

A research institute in Pretoria said South African President Thabo Mbeki's
policy of "quiet diplomacy" in Zimbabwe had contributed to that country's
economic collapse.

The report by the South African Institute of International Affairs said
warmer relations between South Africa and Zimbabwe since Mr. Mbeki took
office in 2000, his tolerant approach to Harare policies, and inaction by
other Southern African Development Community member nations, had discouraged
firmer action by SADC and the African Union while blocking censure motions
tabled in the United Nations.

"Apart from complicity with some of the other SADC countries in keeping the
Zimbabwe issue off the agenda at successive SADC and AU meetings, the South
African government has actively supported Zimbabwe in blocking motions of
censure against Zimbabwe in international forums, most notably the U.N.
Human Rights Commission," said the report, entitled "A Nation in Turmoil:
The Experience of South African Firms Doing Business in Zimbabwe."

The report also faults Pretoria's endorsement of the results of Zimbabwean
elections that have been challenged by the opposition as tainted by violence
or fraud.

The report said Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon Gono has become
what it called a "de facto prime minister," while his central bank has
engaged in business activities that should be left to the private sector,
such as change bureaus.

The report noted, however, that longstanding business ties between South
Africa and Zimbabwe "have not been severed by the current economic problems,
although many companies have preferred to 'ringfence' their Zimbabwe
operations by keeping financials separate from [overall operations] as a way
of riding out the storm."

And, "Despite the deterioration of the economic situation, many people
believe Zimbabwe is still a better and easier place in which to do business
than many other African countries, because of its strong business sector and
relatively good infrastructure," the report states.However, it also notes
that companies have found that Harare's "erratic and often extreme policy
decisions" complicate planning, while "government interference in the
economy is a constant threat."

Policy recommendations in the report included: a change in political
leadership; restoration of the rule of law; the reinstatement of property
rights; making policy more predictable; re-evaluating foreign exchange
policy; shifting spending priorities to address national, rather than ruling
party, needs; significantly reducing public deficits; making policies more
conducive to foreign investment; and restructuring the Reserve Bank to make
it more autonomous while addressing concerns Gono is so powerful in the
marketplace "that he is on the verge of becoming both player and referee."

Reporter Blessing Zulu of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe spoke with report
author Dianna Games, executive director of publishing and research firm
Africa @ Work and managing editor of the institute's South African Journal
of International Affairs.

Governor Gideon Gono responded briefly to the criticisms in the report.

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$500 Billion Boost for Beitbridge

The Herald (Harare)

June 16, 2006
Posted to the web June 16, 2006

Thupeyo Muleya

GOVERNMENT has released $500 billion towards the development of Beitbridge
town into a fully-fledged medium city, a Cabinet minister has said.

In an interview soon after touring development projects at the country's
busiest border post, Local Government, Public Works and Urban Development
Minister, Cde Ignatius Chombo, said the funds were part of the $3 trillion
allocated to his ministry for development projects in various parts of the

Cde Chombo said the remainder of the funds would be released soon.

He said civil works were expected to be completed by the end of this year,
adding that the money will be used for the construction of 300 residential
houses, a new Government complex and the upgrading of sewer and water
reticulation systems.

Under the development programme, 64 garden flats, a modern filling station,
stadium and aerodrome will be constructed.

"We have since released $500 billion of the $3 trillion allocation and we
are happy with the progress being made on the ground so far. Most projects
are at an advanced stage. Everyone is doing his part fairly well and if we
continue working with that pace we might complete the programme earlier than
expected", the Minister said.

Cde Chombo said that so far a 10-member committee has been appointed to
spearhead and stir the development project.

The committee was chaired by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) regional
controller at Beitbridge, Mr Peter Dube and comprised other civil servants.

He added that Beitbridge was the busiest port of entry in sub-Saharan Africa
and it was the face of Zimbabwe hence the need to give it a facelift and
rehabilitate some of its infrastructure.

The minister also added that a commission will be appointed soon to run the
affairs of Beitbridge town on an interim basis.

He said the selection has been done and was still working on a few
logistical issues.

Cde Chombo said the Government would continue mobilising resources aimed at
completing the programme earlier than expected.

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First Quarter Gold Output Registers 24,7pc Decline

The Herald (Harare)

June 16, 2006
Posted to the web June 16, 2006

Victoria Muringayi

GOLD output for the first four months of this year, recording a decline of
24,7 percent, according to statistics released by the Chamber of Mines.

In January gold earnings amounted to $1,7 trillion from a volume of 1 067

The February figures were $1,5 trillion and 857 kilogrammes respectively.

In March the production figure rose marginally to 863,5 kilogrammes valued
at $1,6 trillion but went down to 820.1 kilogrammes the following month.

Coal deliveries for the first three months of the year declined from a total
mass of 235 666 tonnes in January to 188 959 tonnes in March.

Platinum production has increased since the beginning of the year, from 370
kilogrammes in January to 402 kg valued at $1,2 trillion in April.

However, the general the decline in mineral deliveries has been attributed
to low capacity utilisation and shortages of spare parts by those at the
production level.

The mining sector is considered to be one of the economy's strategic
sectors, contributing at least 30 percent of the gross domestic product
(GDP) and more than 40 percent of export receipts.

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Kevin Curran tries to persude more players to return

      Sean Williams lured back by Zimbabwe

      Cricinfo staff

      June 17, 2006

      Sean Williams has made a dramatic u-turn and agreed to play for
Zimbabwe against Bangladesh next month after being personally lured back by
Zimbabwe coach Kevin Curran.

      Williams, who is playing club cricket for Clara Vale in the
Northumberland First Division in Newcastle, has agreed to return home to
play against Bangladesh and then return to England to fulfil his contractual
agreement until the end of the season.

      The move has infuriated his father Colin who is opposed to his son
playing under the current Zimbabwe Cricket regime under Peter Chingoka.

      "Curran phoned me and asked me to play in the one-day games against
Bangladesh," Williams said. "I am definitely coming home next month to play.
I am being given a hard time by my father over that decision - as usual -
but will play anyway because, I have made my decision, I want to play and
try and make a name for myself and hopefully it works out."

      Clara Vale have agreed to release Williams for the duration of
Bangladesh matches as Zimbabwe Cricket are paying for his flights.

      The 19-year-old Williams, who bats in the middle order and bowls
left-arm spin, turned down a contract offer from Zimbabwe Cricket in March
as he sought a career abroad. When he left two weeks ago, he even hinted
that he was going to try and qualify to play for another country other than
Zimbabwe. It seems the prospect of playing at the World Cup lured Williams
to have a change of mind.

      His father Colin is angry that his son has decided to come back and
play. The senior Williams has always been critical of the ZC leadership and
came close to pulling his son out of Zimbabwe team for the Under-19 World
Cup held in Sri Lanka in February this year.

      Curran is understood to have approached a number of players who have
turned their backs on Zimbabwe in recent times with the view of bolstering
his squad ahead of the Champions Trophy set for India in October and next
year's World Cup in the Caribbean.

      Curran is reportedly in England to meet with a number of former
players who prematurely retired from international cricket in protest
against the Chingoka-led administration. His targets are believed to include
former Zimbabwe captain Tatenda Taibu, allrounder Gavin Ewing, and former
Zimbabwe U-19 allrounder Colin De Grandhomme.

      Zimbabwe host Bangladesh in five ODIs at the end of next month.

      © Cricinfo

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Combined Harare Residents Association

16 June 2006


On 9 June 2006, the third term of the Makwavarara Commission expired. The
failure of the mugabe regime to re-appoint the commission or to hold
municipal elections means that there is no authority (legitimate or
otherwise) running the affairs of Harare. The Supreme Court ruled in 2002
that such commissions are clearly intended as stopgap measures to administer
an urban area in the absence of a functioning elected council. They are not
meant to be used to deny citizens their democratic rights.

Harare is the second-largest public enterprise in Zimbabwe. It has revenues
in excess of 30 billion dollars a day, income generated from rates and
charges illegally levied by an illegal authority. Where is that money going?
We have had no audited accounts for several years now so we have no way of
knowing how much money has been stolen. However the blatant theft of our
resources by Makwavarara  was recently exposed when she obtained a house at
a fraction of its true value. She was not fired and prosecuted but merely
asked to pay a bit more. It is clear that Chombo will protect his servant
for as long as she is useful to him.  Makwavarara has headed a commission
that has held power for 18 months or three terms during which she has
presided over brutal repressive attacks upon our people, the destruction of
the informal sector, the demolition of a large percentage of our city's
housing stock, the blatant abuse of municipal resources for personal gain
and no doubt many other crimes that will only be revealed when Harare and
Zimbabwe return to the rule of law and these thieves are prosecuted.

The regime's disregard for the law comes as no surprise to the Combined
Harare Residents Association  which has been battling to overcome the
lawlessness prevailing at Town House since June 2005 when the commission's
term of office was illegally extended for six months. The High Court in its
wisdom refused to protect the interests of residents and address the issue.
We therefore will only approach the courts, not in the pursuit of justice,
but to create a record for the future and to demonstrate the failure of the
judiciary to protect citizens from a rapacious executive.

CHRA remains committed to the rule of law but it is clear that we have now
exhausted all conventional remedies. We therefore believe that there is no
option left but to engage in civil disobedience and mass action. As the
first step, we therefore call upon our members and all residents of Harare
to boycott Municipal rates, charges and facilities whenever possible to deny
financial resources to the thieves who occupy Town House and their political
masters who enjoy the fruits of your money everyday while our city falls
apart. Refuse to pay any rates or other charges. Report any attempts at
intimidation by municipal officials or others to CHRA at 011 612 860 or at
the CHRA office at 103 Daventry House.

We also call upon residents to engage in dialogue with their neighbours and
friends to engage in other acts of protest to send a clear message to the
regime that this is our city and we will no longer tolerate their abuse of
our rights and their theft of our money and resources. If you refuse is not
collected, dump it at the District Office. If your water is cut off by
officials acting under illegal orders, contact CHRA for advice.

Liberate yourselves from fear!

No Taxation Without Representation!

Refuse to fund your own oppression!

Are you a citizen of the Republic or just a docile subject of his majesty?
Subjects are victims but citizens are survivors.

Be a citizen. Say NO to Commissions! NO to dictatorship! NO to thieves!

Say YES to Democracy! YES to Freedom! YES to Accountability!


The Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA) is a membership-based
organisation bringing together residents of Harare in a collective effort to
defend the interests of residents and to promote democracy, accountability
and transparency in Local Government.. For more information contact the
Information Officer on 011612860 or visit our website at or
our office at 103 Daventry House, South Ave, Harare.

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Zimbabwe vows to continue battle against inflation

      June 17, 2006,

      By ANDnetwork .com

      The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has vowed to continue fighting inflation
until it comes down to manageable levels.

      Reserve Bank of Zimbawe (RBZ) Governor, Gideon Gono, says the central
bank will implement wide-ranging measures to reign-in inflation, now at 1
193,5 %.

      "We are determined to make sure that by end of next year inflation
will be in the lower double digit levels," he said.
      "We will unleash all measures necessary to ensure that we reign in

      The Governor was addressing participants attending the 45 th annual
congress of the Zimbabwe Tobacco Association in the capital.
      He said a dramatic change in the inflation outlook was only expected
in the medium to long-term and reiterated the need for unity in the fight
against the scourge.
      "Bringing inflation down does not require a singular effort but
requires all of us to play our part. The economy is a sum total of our
individual activities wherever we are," the governor said.

      Zimbabwe's inflation is one of the highest in the world and has played
havoc with the country's economy, which used to be rated among the best in
the southern African region.
      Meanwhile, Gono announced that the central bank would re-introduce
Foreign Currency Accounts (FCAs) for tobacco farmers starting in the 2006-07
season to enhance the viability of growers.
      "There are structural issues being addressed and we will reinstate the
FCA scheme in the next season," he said.

      The foreign currency retention scheme was scrapped two years ago with
the RBZ opting to give farmers support prices and early delivery bonuses.
      Gono could, however, not reveal the proportions of the retention
scheme saying it was still premature to disclose them.
      "The retention proportions will be sufficient enough to be able to
cushion you from all the vagaries of exchange rate distortions," he told
      He said the central bank wanted to see in the near future, the
operation of market forces for the economy to fully recover, adding that
critical sectors such as tobacco needed to be left to take charge of their
      Tobacco is one of the country's top foreign currency earners.

      The Daily Mirror-Zimbabwe

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Zupco Acquires 5 Super Luxury Buses

The Herald (Harare)

June 16, 2006
Posted to the web June 16, 2006


ZUPCO has acquired five super luxury buses from First Automobile Works,
making a total of 55 buses so far obtained from China, a development that is
expected to ease transport problems in the country.

The luxury buses that have toilets inside, tea making machines, reclining
seats, audio and visual equipment were already on their way to South Africa
from China by ship and were expected to arrive in the country in three weeks

Replenishing of the Zupco fleet comes as the transport utility company
signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in Harare yesterday with FAW,
which was awarded a tender to supply 300 buses about two years ago.

The agreement seeks to give more convenience and affordability in the
delivery and payment of 245 buses from the 300 buses Zupco had contracted
the firm to provide.

Secretary for Finance, Mr Willard Manungo, acting secretary for Local
Government, Public Works and Urban Development, Cde Joseph Mhakayakora,
Zupco board chairman Professor Charles Nherera represented Zimbabwe while
FAW president Mr Zhu Yan Feng, and other senior company officials
represented the Chinese company.

Under the agreement, Zupco could place an order for a specified number of
buses in advance which would in turn be manufactured and shipped to South
Africa before payment was made.

Mr Zhu said his company enjoyed a cordial relationship with Zupco and did
not hesitate to sign the agreement, as it would consolidate their

Speaking during the brief signing ceremony, Professor Nherera said the
presence of senior officials from the Ministry of Finance and other
officials as principal signatories to the agreement demonstrated Government
commitment to the relationship that existed between Zimbabwe and China. He
said the company had already started marketing the coming five new buses and
people were anticipating their coming.

Prof Nherera said of the five, two buses would ply the Harare-Johannesburg
route, while the other two would ply the Bulawayo -Johannesburg route and
one would ply the Harare-Victoria Falls route.

"By doing this, we would be promoting the Zimbabwe tourism industry and that
would also help us in generating foreign currency, which we need to procure
more buses," he said.

"Our aim is to satisfy our market and to do this we need not less than 1 500
buses to be on the road yet currently we only have 400 buses. We will
acquire more buses and service more routes especially in the rural areas."

He said the money used to buy the buses was part of the profit Zupco made
last year.

The Zupco boss said they would purchase 15 more luxury coaches from the 245
outstanding buses from China.

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Chinese PM launches Africa tour


      Wen Jiabao, China's prime minister, has arrived in Africa for a tour
of seven states aimed at boosting economic links and securing raw material
      He flew into Egypt at the start of the trip which will also take him
to Ghana, South Africa and four other countries.

      Deals for oil, copper, timber and other resources are expected to be
discussed. Chinese manufacturers are also seeking new markets,
correspondents say.

      Trade between China and Africa rose to $40bn (£22bn) last year.

      That total has quadrupled in the last five years.

      Mr Wen will also visit Congo-Brazzaville, Angola, Tanzania and Uganda
during his visit.

      His trip comes at a time of growing Chinese interest in the continent.

      But critics in the United States and Europe say Beijing is blocking
international efforts to put pressure on what they call oppressive regimes
in Sudan and Zimbabwe because of its desire for economic deals.

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State Seeks to End Disorder On Farms

The Herald (Harare)

June 16, 2006
Posted to the web June 16, 2006


Farmers should concentrate on production without any fear of being removed
from the farms as the Government will not allow disruptions, the Deputy
Minister of Agriculture Cde Sylvester Nguni said yesterday.

Those who produce crops on farms earmarked for resettlement, he said, should
be allowed to harvest before a new farmer moves in.

Addressing farmers at the Zimbabwe Tobacco Association's 46th annual
congress in Harare, Cde Nguni said cases of farm disruptions had dropped
since last year.

He said the Government wanted to see an end to farm disruptions.

Because of the land reform programme, land now belonged to the State and the
issue was no longer of owning land but making it productive.

Cde Nguni said Zimbabweans with their determination, skills and resources
had access to land for productive purposes.

There has been uncertainty over land ownership, as some farmers felt offer
letters alone were not enough to ensure security.

"Leases may take long but the Government will have other means to ensure
farmers have confidence on the farms for them to make long term plans," Cde
Nguni said.

The deputy minister admitted inflation had affected the tobacco industry and
that exporters should be cushioned against hyperinflation.

The minister pointed out that there was need to look at infrastructure
rehabilitation as another way of ensuring production of quality leaf.

Infrastructure at some tobacco farms had either deteriorated or was
vandalised but the ministry was looking at ways of improving.

While mechanisation remained an important aspect of agriculture, the
shortage of machinery and equipment posed a major obstacle to production.

"Specific sizes of land require a farmer to have machinery rather than
depend on ox-drawn ploughs.

"There is need for the Government to set aside funds to replace, service and
purchase tractors," said Cde Nguni, who also invited farmers to monthly
meetings to discuss industry problems.

Outgoing ZTA president, Mr James de la Fargue, said the future of the
tobacco industry depended on the sector's realism and ability to restore
grower confidence, markets and grower concerns.

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JAG Open Letter Forum No 424


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


Letter 1

Dear JAG

Deepest condolences from all the ex Zimbos living in Malawi.  Wrex Tarr will
be remembered for years to come.  He kept people's spirits up in times of
difficulty in Zimbabwe.....


Letter 2

Dear JAG

Natalie a small Black/White Fox Terrier female went missing in Arundel Park
area, Knowles Close, Norfolk Road area. Very lovely companion.  Please phone
011 207058, 499100, 301670.

Thank you,

John Caine


Letter 3


156 Enterprise RD P.O.Box CH55 Chisipite. Harare
Tel: 497885/497574

BLUE CROSS, Zimbabwe's ultra endurance event.  500 kilometre, cycle, run or
Visit our website

THURS 15 JUNE 2006


from no: 7 Honey Bear Lane, in the Borrowdale/ Helensvale area approx 7 days
ago( 7- 10 July )

If found please contact:
Cell: 011 213 172
tel: 861128

or contact:
ZNSPCA HQ: 497885 or 497574
156 Enterprise Rd Chisipite

Harare SPCA 572152 or 576356/7

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

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