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

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Mail and Guardian

Zimbabwe lawyers concerned at delay in Tsvangirai's bail hearing


      19 June 2003 14:59

Human rights lawyers in Zimbabwe on Thursday expressed concern at the
continued detention of opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai who has been in
custody here for nearly two weeks.

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) said the detention of Tsvangirai
was "the highest profile matter" among a number of cases of allegedly
"delayed justice" in the country's courts.

Tsvangirai was arrested on June 6, the last day of mass action called by his
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party against the government.

He was charged with treason for allegedly inciting the violent overthrow of
President Robert Mugabe's government during rallies ahead of the mass

Tsvangirai denies the charges. He has so far spent 13 nights in police
custody awaiting a ruling on his bail application.

"Concern has also been raised that these delays appear to be more pronounced
in cases that are considered 'sensitive' or of public interest or
politically-related or of a constitutional nature," the ZLHR statement

A judge hearing Tsvangirai's bail application said she would let his lawyers
know this week when they could expect a ruling on the bail application. -
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Mail and Guardian

Now Mugabe takes revenge on transport companies


      19 June 2003 13:50

The Zimbabwe government is to withdraw the operating licences of transport
companies that shut down during a week of mass action early this month to
protest against President Robert Mugabe's government, state-run ZBC radio
station said on Thursday.

Some 44 transport companies in the private sector have already had their
licences withdrawn or are in the process of losing them, the radio said.

At the beginning of the protests, called by the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC), the government ordered businesses that had shut to
reopen or lose their licences.

The government accused company leaders of barring their employees from
working during the week-long protests which took the form of work stoppages
and "peaceful marches for democracy," in the MDC's words.

The work stoppages were well followed in Zimbabwe's cities but attempts to
hold marches were put down, often violently, by the security forces and
pro-government militias.

Hundreds of MDC members and backers were arrested during the protests,
including the party's leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who has been accused by the
state of calling on Zimbabweans to violently oust Mugabe and charged with
treason -- the second such charge against him, and punishable by death.

Tsvangirai was still in police custody on Thursday, awaiting a high court
decision on whether to grant him bail.

The MDC blames Mugabe's government for the economic and social woes in
Zimbabwe, where unemployment is at around 70%, annual inflation higher than
300%, and nearly half the population is threatened by famine caused by a
drought and the government's chaotic land reforms. - Sapa-AFP
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Tsvangirai called off Zim talks - Lekota

      June 19 2003 at 03:30PM

By Ben Maclennan

A Zimbabwean opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai broke off talks with the
ruling Zanu-PF party to launch his recent abortive mass action campaign,
Defence Minister Mosiuoa "Terror" Lekota said on Thursday.

Tsvangirai's "unfortunate" move had weakened South Africa's position as a
mediator in the conflict, Lekota, who is also national chairperson of the
African National Congress, told the Cape Town Press Club.

"After we had prevailed on Zanu and themselves to have the discussions, he
now leaves the discussions and calls this mass action thing, that now puts
him in jail.

      'He calls this mass action thing, that now puts him in jail'
"Why do you leave the talks when the people agree let's go and talk?" an
animated Lekota said in reply to questions on South Africa's stand on

"He must go with his own position to the talks, and then Zanu must come with
their own position.

"But when he left that, we felt he weakened our position. We really felt he
weakened our position, but we'll continue, even now, we continue to say to
Mugabe, they've got to go to the talks."

Tsvangirai is nearing the end of his second week in jail on treason charges
for allegedly inciting the violent overthrow of President Robert Mugabe's
government during rallies ahead of the planned mass action.

The protests were thwarted by a massive show of force from the Zimbabwean
security forces.

      'I've read that also in the newspaper: I know it, sir'
The opposition leader was arrested on June 6, the last day of the planned
mass action.

Lekota told the press club South Africa had played a "principal role", along
with Nigeria, in encouraging the talks.

"Now unfortunately of course Tsvangirai called" he said, but was interrupted
by an interjection of: "He's in jail.

"I've read that also in the newspaper: I know it, sir," Lekota said.

"Let me say something: we got arrested in this country persuading the
government here that we must go to the talks."

Reminded that the ANC itself had staged anti-government marches in the years
before the transition to democracy in 1994, he said:

"But that was saying to the government, let's to go the talks; the
government was refusing to go to the talks.

"When Zanu has agreed to go to the talks with them.

"When President Thabo Mbeki and (Nigerian) president Obasanjo were there, an
agreement was reached that they must go to the talks.
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Zim: 90% drop in production
19/06/2003 18:48  - (SA)

Johannesburg - Zimbabwe's land reform programme has caused a 90% drop in
production in large-scale commercial farming since the 1990s, UN food
organisations said in a report released on Thursday.

Subsequently, about 400 000 farm workers - who were meant to benefit from
the controversial resettlement plan - lost their jobs and homes.

"Following the land reform programme, the large-scale commercial sector now
produces only about one tenth of its output in the 1990s," the report on
crop and food supply in the southern African country stated.

The findings in the document, released simultaneously in Johannesburg and
Rome, are based on a fact-finding mission by the Food and Agriculture
Organisation (FAO) and the World Food Programme to Zimbabwe in April and May
this year.

The delegation was lead by Henri Josserand, the chief of the FAO's Global
Information and Early Warning System. The mission concluded that 5.5 million
people in a population of 11.6 million were in need of food aid, despite the
annual cereal production having increased compared to last year.

The UN estimated that emergency aid agencies needed to provide an estimated
610 000 tons of maize to fill the food gap.

Mealiemeal price escalated

The government controlled price of mealiemeal was raised almost four-fold in
May, exacerbating the situation, the report said.

"This will greatly limit access to available supplies for the most
vulnerable people."

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe embarked on a controversial and sometimes
violent land reform programme in early 2000. The exercise saw at least a
quarter of the country's total land endowment, formerly owned by whites,
being seized to make way for landless blacks.

"These actitivities and processes have severly disrupted farming activities
as many resettled farmers lack access to capital and other inputs or need
time to settle down, contributing to this year's low cereal production," the
report by the UN agencies said.

The land reform programme, erratic rainfall and a severe shortage of mealie
seed and fertiliser were the main causes of the food crisis.

"The situation of over 400 000 former farm workers and their families is
desperate, as they have, in many cases, been displaced from their homes,
have not benefited from the land reforms and have few employment
opportunities," the report said. - Sapa-AFP
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Mugabe wants to anoint successor
By Christopher Munnion in Johannesburg
June 20 2003

President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe is considering quitting within a year
under "certain conditions", South African Government sources say.

Mr Mugabe's demands included the right to nominate his successor and
international and local recognition that he remained the country's properly
elected founding president to enable him to enjoy "honourable retirement",
they said.

The 79-year-old autocrat, whose obsession with clinging to power has brought
his once-prosperous nation to the edge of economic collapse and political
chaos, is said to have assured President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa of his
retirement plans in a telephone call last week.

Mr Mbeki sees Mr Mugabe as a big impediment to his dream of successfully
introducing a scheme under which African nations would commit themselves to
good governance in return for international financial aid.

Mr Mbeki called Mr Mugabe on the eve of the World Economic Forum Africa in
Durban, a crucial meeting for the scheme's acceptance, which the South
African leader hosted.

Mr Mbeki was said to have been enraged by images emerging from Zimbabwe of
Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change,
being hauled before court in chains to face a second charge of high treason
for organising protests against the Mugabe Government.

Sources said Mr Mbeki told Mr Mugabe of South Africa's displeasure over what
was happening. A surprisingly conciliatory Mr Mugabe assured the South
African leader of his plans for conditional retirement but emphasised that
he would not quit under pressure from "troublemakers" or "international

However, Mr Mugabe has repeatedly broken assurances given to South Africa.
His office issued a statement on Wednesday rejecting any suggestion that he
would resign.

The Telegraph, London
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Journo charges Zim ambassador
19/06/2003 21:45  - (SA)

Gaborone - A journalist has filed assault charges against Zimbabwe's
ambassador to Botswana who he says attacked him over an article he wrote,
police said on Thursday.

Hloniphani Chengeta, a journalist for Botswana's Sunday Tribune claimed
Phelekezela Mphoko grabbed him and held him against a wall after the
diplomat objected to a report he had written.

"We have received a complaint and we are dealing with it," Botswana's Police
Commissioner, Norman Malebogo said.

It is unclear whether Mphoko's diplomatic immunity would frustrate attempts
to prosecute him.

"We are conferring with Foreign Affairs on the matter. A decision has not
yet been taken as to how the suspect should be dealt with," Malebogo said.

The incident followed the publishing of an article in which the journalist
quoted the information and publicity secretary of Zimbabwe's ruling party,
Nathan Shamuyarira, saying that Botswana was being used by British and US
troops to launch a regime change in Zimbabwe.

Shamuyarira was also quoted as claiming that Botswana was working with
Zimbabwe's opposition party and Western powers to remove President Robert
Mugabe from power.

Chengeta said that Mphoko "grabbed me by the scruff of the neck and held me
against the wall. One of my colleagues managed to pull him off."

The watchdog Media Institute of Southern Africa issued a statement on the
alleged assault, saying Zimbabwe's High Commission to Botswana denied the
allegations. - Sapa-AP
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Director-General Defends Ben-Menashe

The Herald (Harare)

June 19, 2003
Posted to the web June 19, 2003


THE treason trial of MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai continued yesterday with a
State witness telling the court that chief witness Mr Ari Ben Menashe helped
greatly in thwarting the opposition party's attempts to tarnish the image of
the country.

Director-General of the Department of National Security Retired Brigadier
Happyton Bonyongwe said the information provided by Mr Ben-Menashe to the
Government laid the groundwork for his department to interdict the MDC from
damaging the country's image.

He said the amount of money paid to Mr Ben-Menashe was for the tremendous
job he had done and was in accordance with the contract.

Rtd Brig Bonyongwe said this under cross-examination by Advocate George
Bizos in the ongoing trial of Tsvangirai and his co-accused.

Tsvangirai, the party's secretary-general Welshman Ncube and Gweru Rural MP
Renson Gasela are charged with the plot to assassinate President Mugabe in
the run-up to last year's presidential election.

Rtd Brig Bonyongwe said Mr Ben-Menashe greatly contributed in thwarting the
MDC activities of trying to mislead West African countries about the
country's situation.

"He managed to influence events to directions favourable to the Government,"
he said.

Adv Bizos queried whether he considered the visits of Tsvangirai to West
Africa subversive.

Adv Bizos argued that the activities of the opposition party in West Africa
were not subversive to warrant the Government to pay Mr Ben-Menashe large
sums of money.

But Rtd Brig Bonyongwe suggested that that could be measured by the extent
of the damages caused.

Adv Bizos also asked him if he considered it subversive to criticise the
Government policy on land reforms.

Rtd Brig Bonyongwe replied that Government policies had to be supported as
part of furthering the interests of the State.

He disagreed with a Daily News article read in court on Tsvangirai's visits
to four West African countries.

The article said Tsvangirai visited Nigeria, Ghana, Burkina Faso and Benin
to brief the leaders of those countries about the alleged crisis in the

Rtd Brig Bonyongwe said Tsvangirai had misrepresented to those countries
that there was lawlessness in the country, according to the article.

"I don't think the report was a fair representation of what was happening on
the ground," he said.

"At that time the country was more at peace and there was no wanton
lawlessness in the country."

But Adv Bizos argued that the activities of Tsvangirai in those countries
were not subversive as it was his democratic right to seek the intervention
of well-respected political leaders to help solving the country's crisis.

Rtd Brig Bonyongwe explained again to the court the payments made to Mr
Ben-Menashe and other State witnesses.

The court also heard that one of the witnesses Ms Tara Thomas was paid US$10
000 for the injuries she sustained when she was felled from a bicycle in
Canada by two unidentified men who threatened her saying: "Let your Zimbabwe
help you."

In her evidence Ms Thomas said she was not paid anything by the Government
of Zimbabwe.

The court heard that the Government had extended the contract of Mr
Ben-Menashe to January next year. Tsvangirai and his co-accused deny the
charges that are punishable with the death penalty and argue that the
Government set them up.

Judge President Justice Paddington Garwe is hearing the case with assessors
Major Misheck Nyandoro and Mr Joseph Dangarembizi.

The trial continues.
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Country to Host Conference On Tourism

The Herald (Harare)

June 19, 2003
Posted to the web June 19, 2003

Wisdom Mudzungairi

ZIMBABWE is set to host the World Tourism Organisation international
conference on tourism investment next year.

The international conference, which will involve all the Southern African
Development Community countries aimed at promoting transfrontier
conservation parks, will focus on the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park.

The request was made by the Minister of Environment and Tourism, Francis
Nhema at the 39th WTO Commission for Africa meeting (CAF) in Angola

The international conference will follow a WTO regional seminar on tourism
planning and sustainable development, which will also be held in Zimbabwe.
The regional meeting will assess the implementation of specific programme
activities to promote tourism development in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Cde Nhema, who held strategic meetings with the WTO secretary general, has
also requested the mother body's expertise in developing Zimbabwe's national
tourism master plan.

Although the WTO was not a funding agency, officials indicated that the
organisation would ensure that Zimbabwe obtained technical assistance as
well as sourcing funding to develop the plan.

Zimbabwe has been struggling to produce a national tourism development plan
for almost five years now resulting in fragmented, adhoc and unrealistic
tourism planning.


Cde Nhema also discussed with his counterparts from Zambia, Angola, Botswana
and Namibia on the resuscitation of the Okavango Upper Zambezi Initiative
project. The project could become Southern Africa's second largest
transfrontier tourism development after the Great Limpopo Park.

The CAF meeting in Angola was the first international meeting held in that
country since it attained peace last year.

Angola was chosen as the venue, in solidarity with its people.

The meeting discussed, among other important issues, the role and impact of
tourism on the consolidation of African co-operation, tourism and peace in
Africa, investments in tourism and creating conditions, unlocking the
future: public-private partnerships and the high road for development in
Africa Nepad, and tourism.

The meeting also discussed national programmes on the implementation of
principles established by the Global Code of Ethics for tourism.

To further cement tourism development between Zimbabwe and Angola, a
delegation from Angola is expected in the country soon with a view to enroll
students from their country at local tourism colleges.

Meanwhile, Cde Nhema has appointed the new members of the Zimbabwe Tourism
Authority board.

The move that is expected to accelerate the long awaited deployment of
tourism attaches to traditional and new markets to revive the lucrative
tourism sector has seen National Merchant Bank deputy chief executive Mr
James Mushore will also r remain the chairman of the board.

Long-serving member Mr Emmanuel Fundira was also retained as deputy chairman
of the board.

Other members of the board include hotelier and management consultant Mr
Genius Joel Maposa, Air Zimbabwe chief executive Mr Rambai Chingwena and
Zimbabwe Sun leisure group chief executive officer Mr Shingi Munyeza.

An executive director of Untamed Africa Safaris Mr Tomuonga Chuma and
accountant Ms Hilda Agnes Mwamuka have also been appointed board members
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Real Interest Rates, Correction of the Yield Curve: Solutions to Cash Crisis

The Herald (Harare)

June 19, 2003
Posted to the web June 19, 2003

Happy Madan'ombe

In a previous article, the cash crisis currently gripping our country was
mentioned in passing with a particular emphasis on the threat to the
viability of the financial sector.

Then, the crisis was not as grave as it is.

As I write, at present, long winding queues at ATMs and in banking halls are
the order of the day.

Unfortunately, as is the case in our economy, whenever there is a shortage
of any commodity, a black market for that particular commodity looms.

Ironically, there is already a thriving black market for Zimbabwe dollar

Very recently, a friend of mine intended to cash a cheque for $120 000.00
but had to pay one of the bank tellers at his bank $20 000.00 as kickback in
order to get the much needed cash.

In the end he had to settle for a $100 000.00 whilst the other $20 000.00
lined up the pockets of the greedy teller.

Now, I would term this kind of scenario "a black market for cash" because
someone is getting his funds at a premium when in normal circumstances he
could have accessed the funds for free.

Having discussed the gravity of the crisis, I intend to offer my views on
how we can find our way out of this, which threatens the whole financial
system with collapse.

The shortage of cash has been largely blamed on the non - availability of
foreign currency to buy the paper on which to print notes.

Basic commodities black market dealers and parallel market foreign market
dealers have also rightly not been spared from blame for causing the

To solve the first problem, the RBZ has decided to introduce a note of
bigger denomination (the proposed $1 000 note).

As regards the second problem, banks have been tasked with restricting
client withdrawals to paltry amounts a situation which is driving most
depositors away from the financial system.

I recently overheard a depositor vowing never to deposit his money into his
account after failing to meet his obligations due to the shortage of cash.

But, are the remedies being prescribed and implemented the correct
medication to cure the demand side of the inflationary pressures that are
bedevilling our economy?

Inflation hit a record 300.1 percent at the end of May 2003 and with the
continued shortage of foreign currency, fuel shortages, persistent power
cuts and reduced agricultural output, is forecast to rise further.

Now with this in mind, as I have said before, consumers will always spend
ahead of inflation.

Besides the stock and property markets, there is no other formal investment
market, which provides a hedge against inflation.

The real returns on the money and capital markets are negative by more than
100 percent.

The marginal propensity to consume in a country where there are commodity
shortages is unacceptably high.

The demand for money has to be stemmed and one of the ways to do so is by
introducing real rate of returns on the local money market. As long as
investors are guaranteed of a hedge against inflation, then money will flow
back to the banking system.

Otherwise, what we have is a classical version of "self-induced too much
money chasing too few goods".

Some would argue that the government already reeling under a $360 billion
debt would be hurt most by a surge in rates but remember debt repayments are
gradual whilst a run on the banks is spontaneous and has far reaching
consequences than a rise in government debt.

As for productive borrowing, remember there is the revolving fund where
exporters and producers can borrow at concessionary rates of 5 percent and
15 percent respectively.

Real rate of returns would also effectively wipe out "consumptive" and
speculative borrowing in the process reducing the aggregate demand in the

You wouldn't use the overdraft facility at your bank at a charge of 280
percent would you, unless if really necessary of course?

For a long time now, the RBZ has distorted the yield curve or should I say
induced the money market to operate ultra-vires the interest rate theorem.

Interest rate theory stipulates that rates of return should be higher on
longer investment periods and lower on short investment periods.

However, it is the reverse on the local market with investors enjoying
higher yields on the shorter term and lower on the longer- term. Readers
might be wondering what this has to do with the shortage of notes in banks.

The simple fact is that the distortion of the yield curve has encouraged
short term financial decision making.

Investments are made and mature so soon that the previously invested funds
are soon in the hands of the public.

This tends to increase the amount of cash held by the public at any given
point in time which indirectly increases the marginal propensity to consume.

In order to reign in on short term financial decision making, rates should
be induced to be more attractive on the long term in order to compensate the
investor for the deferred use of his money over a longer period, inflation
and default risk which increases in proportion to the length of the

Consumers should have a long term view of their funds and investments and
there is need to correct the yield curve if this goal is to be achieved.

In my view an implementation of these market fundamentals applied in the
correct dosages of course would go a long way in averting this crisis which
increasingly is becoming the new Achilles hill to our economy.

A run on the banks is unthinkable!

Contact First Mutual Regional Financial Advisers on:

Shepherd Shambira 091 252 639

Onias Gweru 091 233 373

Sofia Kara 011 219 347

Head Office: 263-4-886000/34

Bulawayo: 263-9-67436

Mutare: 263-202-66013/66813

Fax: 263-4-886049

l This article is published for general investment advice and it must be
noted that the price of equities and the income derived from them can rise
as well as fall. Neither First Mutual Asset Management nor the author shall
be held liable for any losses as a result of the investment advice contained
in this article. It is important that specific investment advice is sought
as each investor's investment will be dependent on their circumstances.
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Good Harvest Prompts Zambia to Dismantle Relief Centres

Allan Peters

LUSAKA, Jun 19 (IPS) - Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa has dismantled
relief centres and stopped maize import, following good harvest this season.

Mwanawasa said farmers have produced 1.1 million metric tonnes of maize
grain, close to the 1.2 million metric tonnes Zambia requires annually.

”The figure is likely to reach 1.5 million tonnes since some farmers are
still harvesting their crops,” said Mwanawasa while inspecting farms in
Chisamba, a town some 80 kilometres north of the capital Lusaka, this week.

The good harvest has been attributed to the favourable weather conditions in
the last farming season, coupled with the positive response by farmers to
grow more food crops.

Last year the World Food Programme (WFP) sent an urgent appeal to donors to
provide assistance to some 13 million people - threatened with starvation -
in southern Africa, until this year's harvest.

More than 2.3 million of those starving were from Zambia -- where the
traditional maize belt of southern province, where an estimated 60 percent
of the population required relief aid, was the hardest hit.

Prolonged drought and flooding in most parts of the country, coupled with
poor agricultural management, saw eight of Zambia's nine provinces recording
maize deficits last year.

Zambia had a projected maize deficit of around 626,000 metric tonnes until
Apr. this year, with commercial importers bringing in 351,000 metric tonnes
of maize, according to the WFP. The remaining shortfalls of 275,000 metric
tonnes were covered by government and donor aid.

The recipients included some 250,000 refugees from war-torn Angola and the
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Last year's shortages caused food prices to soar by more than 300 percent in
some cases, putting an even greater strain on people living with HIV/AIDS
and the family members struggling to care for them.

”The decline in agriculture output last year led to food shortfalls, which
in turn were reflected in the rise in annual inflation rate of 26.7 percent
from 18.7 percent at the end of 2001,” says a financial commentator in

The food shortages caused Zambia's economy to grow by only 3 percent last
year against the projected 6 percent growth, after the 4.9 percent growth in

Since farmers started harvesting their crops, prices of food have been
falling. A snap survey conducted by IPS in Lusaka showed that a
25-kilogramme bag of maize meal which used to cost 45,000 ZamKwacha (10 U.S.
dollars) three months ago is now fetching half that price.

The central Bank of Zambia says the availability of food on the market has
triggered the monthly rate of inflation to fall three months in a row.

”At 0.2 percent, the Apr. monthly inflation rate was 0.6 percentage points
lower than the previous month's rate,” says the bank in its latest Monthly
Financial Markets Review report just released.

Since Zambia has enough food and will not import this year, the agriculture
sector is expected to contribute significantly to the country's Gross
Domestic Product (GDP) through export of surplus crops.

Zimbabwe, where seven million people need food aid, has already indicated
its desire to import maize from Zambia to meet shortfall. The food shortage
in Zimbabwe has its roots in the country's controversial land reform
programme. Under the programme, which was implemented between 2000 and 2002,
the government of President Robert Mugabe seized land from 4,500 white
commercial farmers for redistribution to landless blacks.

The white farmers used to produce the bulk of Zimbabwe's food crops.

But Zimbabwe may have to wait a little longer to start importing as Zambia
is holding on to its crops. ”Maize exports should be considered only after
meeting the local demand,” warns Ajay Vashee, president of the Zambia
National Farmers Union.

Zambia, with a population of around 11 million, banned the export of maize,
the country's staple food, at the peak of the food shortages last year.
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Harare 19th June 2003
CHRA recognizes the constraints imposed upon the operations of the Municipality by the macro-economic realities of Zimbabwe and by the Ministry of Local Government. With inflation running at over 270% (officially but actually much more) and with a punitive increase in foreign currency rates from Z$60 to $850 to the US dollar (an effective devaluation of over 1300%), it is unrealistic to expect our Council to adhere to any budget drawn up in 2002. The proposed tariff increases will not even result in full cost recovery however and we cannot expect any improvement in the provision of services: at most, the City may be able to stem the decline in service delivery.
Within these parameters, however, residents have a right to expect a number of things.
·          We wish to see an end to the political interference by the central government in the affairs of our elected council. The blatant attempts by the Minister to undermine the efforts of our Mayor and Council to rectify years of mismanagement must cease and our elected officials must be allowed to pursue the policies of transparent and accountable local government for which they were elected. Council must pursue legal action to limit this unwarranted interference and put an end to the political wrangling that is undermining the core business of Council.
·          Council must be allowed to borrow finance to implement capital projects that are desperately needed such as upgrading the water reticulation system.
·          Debtors must be compelled through legal action to settle their accounts.
·          The provision of potable water is a key aspect of the well being of residents. Council must maintain a social provision of basic water needs but beyond this, full cost recovery must be implemented. Punitive rates for excessive usage by gardeners, industry, and business should be instituted.
·          There must be a complete and thorough audit of municipal employees. A time and motion study should be implemented to improve efficiency and management. The municipal wage bill must be reduced substantially by staff reductions coupled with improved conditions for retained staff to improve productivity. The wage bill should be set to a percentage of expenditure. The current attritional approach to labour reduction is inefficient and undermines the functioning of the municipality.
·          Measures must be implemented to limit the provision of services to non-residents who use of Harare's facilities but do not contribute to its financial well being. Health and other services provided by Council must be for the benefit of residents, not rural visitors. If necessary, a residents' tax may need to be imposed. At present 65% of rates income goes to the health services - this is not sustainable.
·          With regard to non-essential services, unproductive and costly operations must be discontinued or commercialized: eg,
·          The Parking account is a disaster and costs far more to operate than warranted. The current on-street parking system needs to be revised. Parking arcades should be commercialized. Traffic fines are no longer effective in controlling traffic and fine recovery is minimal.
·          The Municipal Police service should be disbanded as recommended by the Thompson Report.
·          Mbare Bus terminus should be commercialized and adequate enforcement of by-laws implemented to ensure that busses utilize the facility instead of parking elsewhere.
·          By-laws must be enforced to re-establish respect for the law. Municipal courts are essential for the efficient enforcement of by-laws and Council must look at the mechanics of establishing these.
·          Decentralization of revenue collection and expenditure as well as decision-making to local district offices coupled with increased interaction with residents associations must be a priority goal. This will result in greater community participation and increased accountability of officials and elected representatives.
While we accept the need for the supplementary budget, Council must not regard residents as an endless source of funding. The increases will add to the already intolerable burdens of residents in the city. Many residents have already expressed discontent with the perceived failure of Council to address their immediate concerns such as waste removal, street cleaning, enforcement of by-laws, and other areas of their lives. If no tangible benefits result in the near future, residents will be reluctant to acquiesce in future increases.
Combined Harare Residents Association
11 Armagh Rd
PO Box HR 7840
Tel                   746019 or 776157
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