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- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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From The Truth Seeker

Life Under Mugabe's Tyranny

Paul Weir - June 22, 2004

In October 2002 my brother and his family were evicted from the 7,000 acre
farm in Zimbabwe which my father had first hacked out of virgin bush in
1923. It was a productive and profitable operation to the end despite twenty
years of black rule: about 300 acres of top of the line export tobacco, a
thousand head of beef cattle and about ten acres of greenhouse roses which
were flown weekly to Europe. My brother had also set up in 1990 a three
thousand acre game farm along with his neighbours as a wild animal
preservation, a cause dear to his heart. This included seven giraffe and
herds of impala, wildebeest, gazelles and zebras. Periodically,
hunter-tourists from the US would fly in to cull the herds. About 200 blacks
were employed on the farm along with their families who were paid a
government-set wage and given free housing, electricity and running water.
My brother, like many others, has over the years paid huge taxes to the

Most of the farmers living in the district suffered the same fate. My niece,
married to a local farmer, had to leave her home of five years with her
young family and move to Harare.

Nearly two years later, all of these wonderfully run farms have gone to

Ninety percent of the country's white farmers, numbering about 3,000, have
been forced off their farms without compensation. Most of the farm employees
have also been evicted by government-backed "war vets". My brother was
obligated to pay compensation to these ex workers.

During the evictions, many of the farmers were barricaded into their homes
as hordes of Mugabe's squatters threatened to kill them. Some whites were
murdered; one of them was a neighbor and close friend of my brother.

Another held a posse of blacks at bay for two hours before he was

In the main, the farmers and their families abandoned their property
peaceably and left their life's work behind because there was no other
option. They did not seek violence. They were first-rate farmers who loved
the land where they were born but they were outnumbered and unsupported.

Last week, Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe's elderly dictator, announced that he
wants the remaining 30,000 whites living in the towns out of the country by
the end of 2005. I am sure he means what he says.

There hasn't been a word about any of this in the US media.

A little background:

Cecil John Rhodes set up the British South Africa Company in 1896 and sent a
column of pioneers into the area bordering the Transvaal north of the
Limpopo River. Rhodes had amassed a huge gold and diamond fortune backed by
the British Rothschilds. His plan was to establish British influence from
Cape Town to Cairo and "Rhodesia" became the foundation stone in his
imperial dream.

In this vast area south of the Zambezi River, there were two tribal groups,
the Mashona and the Matabele, an offshoot of the Zulus. Within five years
both had been quelled. My grandparents decided to try their hand in Rhodesia
and they moved in 1898 from Johannesburg to the pioneer town of Bulawayo.
They were doing what countless white American pioneers had been doing for a
century across the hinterland of America.

Within twenty years the country was flourishing with an infrastructure of
roads, ailways, agriculture and a mining industry which provided gold and
chrome. Self-government was granted by England in 1923. The black
population, about 250,000 when the whites arrived, had reached nine million
by the 1980's. My grandmother, like many others, handed out quinine and
penicillin at the back door and probably saved thousands of lives. Unlike
the American Indians who were almost wiped out, the blacks in Rhodesia not
only survived but were provided with primary education and low wage jobs.

The Mashona, traditionally subject to raids from the more war-like Matabele
were secure for the first time in their history.

My father was born in 1899 and grew up in Rhodesia, later attending a public
school in England. It was 1917 and soon he had joined the Royal Flying Corps
as a trainee pilot, flying early planes across the Channel.

After the war, he returned to Rhodesia and bought a piece of land with the
help of a government loan. It was a lonely life. At first, he ravelled
around his property on a horse but he persevered and by the fifties was
running a prosperous tobacco growing operation.

The same year he started the farm, 1923, a black child was born on a Jesuit
mission at Kutama, about twenty miles from our farm as the crow flies. This
child's name was Robert Mugabe.

My father married my mother on a visit to England in the 1930's. She
exchanged a life of familiar English suburban comfort for an unknown future
in a strange land surrounded by blacks. They lived in a thatched brick house
at first, and she soon adapted and raised us three children.

One of our neighbors was the Taylor family whose daughter became the
novelist Doris Lessing. Her father, like mine, was a veteran of the First
World War but he didn't prosper whether due to bad luck, bad weather or lack
of capital. I never knew Doris Taylor who was born 25 years before I was
though my mother did. She resented her lowly status as the daughter of a
"poorer white" and identified with the blacks, throwing her lot in with
their plight and became a communist. I remember listening to the grown ups
on the verandah in the early 50's who were scandalized that she had betrayed
her white background with her first novel "The Grass is Singing" which came
out in Britain. She had touched on the forbidden subject of black white
sexual relationships. In those days there was a law against interracial sex
and although there were white men who had "gone black" by taking a black
mistress, white woman were sacrosanct.

I did my military service in 1964 in Ian Smith's army and left the country
for good in 1968. The writing was always on the wall for me from the time I
was a small boy. We whites were outnumbered and it was obvious that Britain
would undermine white rule at every turn, which they did. My brother was the
farmer in the family. He loved the life which he had grown up with.

The war years after Ian Smith declared independence were difficult and many
whites and blacks died. It was also a time of extraordinary ingenuity with
the government fighting sanctions. By the time Mugabe took over, the
Rhodesian dollar was still worth more than the US dollar, despite 16 years
of sanctions. Under Mugabe the Zimbabwe dollar is about .0005 of a US dollar
and inflation is off the radar.

Conditions under white rule may not have been ideal. There were many
injustices but there were jobs, plentiful food and opportunity. Under
Mugabe, there are none of these. Mugabe, a Shona, has reverted to the tribal
tyrant which he always was. Like Idi Amin in Uganda, he views the country as
his personal fiefdom and is extremely skilled at manipulating and buying off
his supporters who form a privileged elite. He also has the support of
international corporate backers.

One of the first actions Mugabe took when he came to power in 1980 was to
slaughter 30,000 of the minority Matabele tribe. I believe that there will
be renewed ethnic cleansing of the Matabele in the near future.

Barricaded behind high security fences in their houses in Harare, my family
may well be forced to move again, this time from the country they grew up
in. It makes me very sad - and angry that the US government and media are
seemingly indifferent.
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AI Index: AFR 46/019/2004 (Public)
News Service No: 160
23 June 2004

Zimbabwe/South Africa: President Mbeki should be more publicly active in
resolving the Zimbabwean crisis
President Thabo Mbeki must intensify efforts to put pressure on the
Government of Zimbabwe to end the continued violation of human rights,
according to an open letter from human rights and civil society
organizations delivered today to President Mbeki.

The letter, signed by Amnesty International (AI) South Africa, AI Zimbabwe
and other human rights and civil society organizations from South Africa and
Zimbabwe underlines the ongoing and unrelenting nature of the crisis in
Zimbabwe. The signatories highlight the disparity between the ideals and
principles enshrined both in the New Partnership for Africa's Development
and the Vision and Mission of the African Union, and the reality of the
situation in Zimbabwe as experienced by millions of Zimbabweans.

"In elaborating the Vision of the African Union and Mission of the African
Union Commission, African leaders prioritized the realization of social,
economic, civil, cultural and political rights, and made a commitment to
assist member states to realize these rights. We are therefore urging
African states to take a more public stand in resolving the crisis in
Zimbabwe," the signatories said.

The organizations that signed the open letter - many of whom are involved in
monitoring the human rights situation in Zimbabwe - outlined concrete steps
which are needed to tackle human rights abuses. These steps include: the
repeal or amendment of all legislation which violates internationally
recognized rights; an immediate commitment to restore systems for state
accountability; the impartial investigation of all allegations of human
rights violations, leading to those responsible being brought to justice; a
public commitment to ensuring the right of all Zimbabweans to food,
including transparent and impartial distribution of all state-controlled foo
d supplies.

The letter will be published as a full page advert in the South African Mail
and Guardian newspaper on Friday 25 June.

Its signatories include: The Amani Trust,, AI Zimbabwe, Catholic Commission
for Justice and Peace (Zimbabwe), Centre for the Study of Violence and
Reconciliation, CIVICUS, Coalition for Peace in Africa, Gays and Lesbians of
Zimbabwe, Human Rights Institute of South Africa, Human Rights Trust of
Southern Africa, Legal Resources Foundation, Media Monitoring Project of
Zimbabwe, Non-violent Action and Strategies for Social Change, Transparency
International (Zimbabwe), University of Zimbabwe Legal Aid and Advice
Scheme, Zimbabwe Association for Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation of the
Offender, Zimbabwe Association for Doctors for Human Rights, Zimbabwe Civic
Education Trust, Zimbabwe Human Rights Association, Zimbabwe Lawyers for
Human Rights, Zimbabwe Peace Project, Zimbabwe Watch, Zimbabwe Women Lawyers

For further information please call the press officer of Amnesty
International South Africa on +27 83 261 2656
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How many millions will go hungry in Zim?
          June 23 2004 at 03:39PM

      Harare - More than two million Zimbabweans will suffer from food
shortages this year, according to a new report obtained by AFP on Wednesday
that cast further doubt on government forecasts of a bumper harvest.

      The report by a committee of United Nations agencies, non-governmental
organisations as well as Zimbabwean government departments recommends that
food aid be sought "for the most vulnerable people who are food insecure up
until March 2005."

      "A total of 2.3 million people will not be able to meet their minimum
cereal needs during the 2004-2005 season," said the summary of the report by
the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC).

      The report draws its conclusions from a survey done in April, and
since then the government has said it is expecting a bumper harvest and will
not be appealing for international food aid.

      President Robert Mugabe's government has forecast a bumper harvest of
2.4 million tons of maize, enough to cover domestic needs.

      Mugabe insisted in a television interview last month that Zimbabweans
were not hungry.

      "Why foist this food upon us? We don't want to be choked," he said.

      The new figure of just over two million hungry people is a significant
drop from the five million or so people that aid agencies had predicted
would require food aid this year.

      According to the assessment committee's survey, Zimbabwe's two eastern
provinces - Mashonaland East and the densely populated Manicaland province -
will have the biggest grain deficit. - Sapa-AFP

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Zimbabwe Proposes Further Tightening Stringent Media Laws

      HARARE (AP)--Journalists from three banned newspapers wouldn't be able
to find work under a government proposal to tighten a section of Zimbabwe's
sweeping media laws, an alliance of pro-democracy groups warned Wednesday.

      The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition said such a move would be another
blow to press freedom in the troubled southern African country, and appealed
to the government to "desist from making laws that confirm local and
international perceptions that Zimbabwe has become a full-fledged

      A government notice published Friday proposes that journalists who
continue to work while suspended by the state-appointed media commission be
fined and jailed for up to two years, the coalition said in a statement.

      More than 100 journalists effectively had their government
accreditation suspended when the state Media and Information Commission shut
down their newspapers earlier this year as part of a media crackdown.

      Government officials didn't immediately respond to the statement.
Parliament, which is overwhelmingly dominated by the ruling ZANU-PF party,
is expected to approve the amendment in coming weeks.

      The same penalties already apply to journalists working without having
applied for a license or whose applications have been denied.

      President Robert Mugabe's government, faced with a spiraling political
and economic crisis, shut down the country's only independent daily
newspaper, The Daily News, and its Sunday edition in February after a long
legal battle.

      Earlier this month, the independent weekly Tribune newspaper was
suspended from publishing for a year for allegedly operating without a valid
registration certificate.

      The coalition said the proposed amendment was "meant to stop
journalists from these media houses from practicing."

      "It is disheartening to note that after the closure of these
newspapers, the government continues on its war path against freedom of
expression by criminalizing the journalism profession," it said.

      The independent papers had been a platform for dissent against
Mugabe's increasingly authoritarian rule.

      Senior officials called independent journalists "traitors" for
reporting on the country's political and economic woes. They have also
accused former colonial ruler Britain of bankrolling independent newspapers
and opposition leaders.

      Since the media laws were enforced in March 2002, 31 independent
journalists have been arrested and charged for alleged violations. But no
journalists from the five main state-run newspapers, or the national radio
and television stations, have been arrested, despite abuses by some
reporters, according to the coalition.

      The latest newspaper closure has brought international condemnation.

      The European Union, in a statement issued Tuesday in Brussels, called
the Tribune's suspension "a further attack on freedom of expression and
democratic space" in Zimbabwe.

      "This is of particular importance in the context of approaching
elections, a free press being a necessary prerequisite of a democratic
society," it said.

  Dow Jones Newswires
  06-23-041357ETCopyright (C) 2004 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights

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Zimbabwe sets July 19 for trial of 'mercenaries'

June 23, 2004, 17:49

Seventy suspected mercenaries detained in Zimbabwe on charges of plotting to
topple the government of oil-rich Equatorial Guinea will go on trial on July
19, state prosecutors said today. The men, all South African citizens, were
arrested in March after their plane landed in Harare en route to what
Zimbabwe officials said was a mission to oust the small West African state's
leader, President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo.

The suspects have denied the charges, saying they were heading to the
Democratic Republic of Congo to guard mining operations.

At a routine appearance at a maximum-security prison today, senior
prosecutor Lawrence Phiri said the state would start the men's trial next
month - opening the door to a case which analysts say could be embarrassing
for Harare as well. "The accused should be remanded in custody to July 19,
and that will be the trial date," Phiri said. "If we are ready to start
earlier than that date we will inform the defence and the court," he said.

As Phiri announced the trial date, most of the 70 suspects sat motionless,
staring blankly in a large hall converted to a court. A few others shuffled
their feet and looked at each other and at the audience, which included some
of their friends and relatives.

Security boosted at the Chikurubi Maximum Prison Complex
Zimbabwe has boosted security at the Chikurubi Maximum Prison Complex where
the men are held, adding guards and sending helicopter gun ships on patrol
overhead amid fear that supporters of the detained men might try to rescue
them. State prosecutors also said today that 12 prison officers accused of
assaulting some of the men would go on trial on July 13.

Two weeks ago Jonathan Samkangehe, the detainees' Zimbabwean lawyer, said
the state was reluctant to start the men's trial because it could not
support charges against them, which include violating security, firearms,
aviation and immigration laws. Defence analysts said Zimbabwe may have also
moved slowly on the case out of concern that a trial might reveal details of
the men's bid to illegally buy weapons from Zimbabwe's state arms company,
which has powerful political connections.

Today, however, Samkange said the defence was ready. "Our position remains
the same. There is no case and we are ready for the trial because it will
prove our contention that the state has no strong case, especially those
charges that they were on a mercenary mission," he said.

Defence lawyers say the men's detention is prejudicial since they face only
fines if convicted. They say they have unsuccessfully sought to have the
trial moved to South Africa, saying their clients might be extradited to
Equatorial Guinea where they could face the death sentence. A further 15 men
are already being held in Equatorial Guinea charged with involvement in the
coup plot.

In April, Obiang said he was in talks with Zimbabwe on possible extradition
of the men to Equatorial Guinea, but President Robert Mugabe's government
has not made any announcement.

State lawyers have said the Zimbabwe charges could carry life imprisonment,
but the defence says the maximum penalty would be a fine of 200 000
Zimbabwean dollars (about R232) each. - Reuters
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Rabies Outbreak in Marirangwe

The Herald (Harare)

June 23, 2004
Posted to the web June 23, 2004


There has been an outbreak of rabies in Marirangwe small-scale farming area
adjacent to Mhondoro, the Department of Veterinary Services has said.

This follows five cases of the disease which resulted in the death of three
cattle, two goats and a dog.

The disease was first detected in the area two weeks ago and the department
quickly moved in to put the outbreak under control.

According to the Mashonaland East provincial veterinary officer Dr George
Gwaze, a stray dog that was later tested for rabies and found positive, bit
the cattle and goats.

"We took the heads of the dead animals that exhibited signs of the disease,
tested them and they were found to be positive," he said.

"Since the discovery of the disease, the department has embarked on a
vaccination campaign that has seen the department vaccinating more than 20
000 animals.

"I would like to confirm that there hasn't been any new cases reported of
late," he said.

"The Department of Veterinary Services would like to urge all the people who
come into contact with such animals, whether dead or alive, to seek early
medical attention from health centres in their areas.

"People should report all suspicious cases to the department and seek
medication against the disease as it can also affect human beings," he said.

The veterinary department appealed to dog owners to take their pets for

The land reform programme has seen a lot of animals being moved from one
area to another.

The department also urged newly resettled farmers to vaccinate their animals
against such diseases and not to consume meat from animals suspected to have
died from illness.

Dr Gwaze said the department had secured enough drugs for all emergencies
and would react quickly to all cases if notified.

In March, New Ziana reported that the department had been hit by a shortage
of drugs, resulting in only about 200 000 dogs out of an estimated 400 000
countrywide being inoculated against rabies last year.
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Zimbabwean lawyer on the run

June 23, 2004, 15:34

By Chris Msipa
Police in Zimbabwe say they have launched a manhunt for the lawyer of the
directors of ENG Capital Asset Management, who early this year allegedly
defrauded clients of ZW$61-billion (About R70 million). Oliver Mandipaka,
the police spokesperson, says Oscar Ziweni, the legal practitioner, has
failed to turn up for questioning over ZW$138 million (about R1.6 million)
stolen from the ENG firm.

He says Ziweni is suspected to have converted the money to his own use after
he collected it from companies and individuals indebted to the organisation,
for which he was a debt collector. Mandipaka also says the lawyer was
supposed to have handed over the funds to Reggie Saruchera, who was
appointed liquidator of ENG after the company collapsed, but failed.

Ziweni is now suspected to have fled the country like Gilbert Muponda, one
of the two ENG directors, who is reported to be hiding in the United Kingdom
where hundreds of Zimbabweans are living in exile. The authorities have
warned members of the public against buying any assets from Ziweni to avoid
losing their money. This comes after the suspect allegedly moved some
computers from his offices in the capital, Harare.

A number of Zimbabwean business executives and state workers, including
police officers, have fled since early this year after the administration of
president Robert Mugabe embarked on an anti-corruption drive.

At least one cabinet minister, Chris Kuruneri, and James Makamba, a member
of the ruling Zanu(PF) Central Committee, are in prison facing charges of
externalising millions of dollars at a time when the country had serious
foreign currency shortages. High-level crime is said to be one of the major
causes of the economic crisis that has gripped Zimbabwe for the past four
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      Zimbabweans denounce claims of food abundance

      June 23, 2004, 13:07

      Millions of people in Zimbabwe are struggling to feed themselves due
to poor harvests in the past three seasons. The government of Robert Mugabe
maintains the country has enough stocks to last until more yields next year
from irrigations and resettlements on farms seized over the past four years.

      However, the claims have not gone down well with politicians of both
the ruling ZANU(PF) and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC),
who described the statements as irresponsible. Titus Chauke, a member of the
ZANU(PF) central committee, is quoted as saying the official declarations on
the situation lack logic because they chase off possible donors ready to
help the needy. He says hundreds-of-thousands of people in the south-eastern
and south-western districts, which comprise dry lands of the country, are
still buying food after very poor yields last year.

      City council records in the commercial city of Bulawayo also reveal
about 40 people, some of them children and the elderly, died because of
hunger in the municipality, where 65 others starved to death last year. The
government early this year barred the World Food Programme from assessing
the state of food supply in Zimbabwe, where at least five-million needed
emergency supplies the previous season.

      Reports say the global aid agency is back in the country, carrying out
surveys in drought-prone areas like Matabeleland, the Midlands and Masvingo
regions. Mugabe and his ministers are on record saying their controversial
agrarian reforms, which displaced thousands of white commercial farmers, has
born fruits. The authorities say Zimbabwe does not need aid, as it can now
feed itself and remain with surpluses. But critics describe the statements
as politicking aimed to win legislative votes next year and support of other
African governments.
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Beacon News, Chicago

Zimbabwe a regime that has utterly failed

At issue: The southern African nation is taking control of all private land.
We say: It's another in a long line of mistakes.

There are few nations more "failed" and few governments more deserved of
"regime change" than Zimbabwe, the once prosperous African showcase reduced
to penury and bankruptcy under its fanatical ruler, Robert Mugabe, age 80.

The latest abuse visited on his people by Mugabe is the abolition of private
farmland. This follows on murder, stolen elections, the jailing of political
opponents, the closing of independent newspapers and the wrecking of the
economy. It is a wretched record for an African state blessed with the
natural resources to be successful.

In a statement that might be lifted from one of Stalin's decrees or Orwell's
Animal Farm, Mugabe's government announced this month that: "All land shall
be state land, and there will be no such thing called private land."

With the country's farms already in a state of collapse from Mugabe's
thuggish transfer of land from white and black farmers to his political
supporters, the land takeover is likely to lead to a further loss of food
production and even famine.

There are few abuses that Mugabe has not visited on the nation in his
ruthless efforts to hang on to power, which he has done now for a quarter
century, or since independence. As foreign nations have increased pressure
on him to step down, he has tightened control, determined to demonstrate
that if he goes down, he will take the country with him.

It begins to look like the country will go down first. The outside world
looks on in exasperation, having exhausted most political and diplomatic

The United States and European Union have cut most ties and all assistance.
The British Commonwealth suspended Zimbabwe, which then quit the
organization. The International Monetary Fund has frozen aid and begun
procedures to suspend Zimbabwe over debt arrears of $284 million.

International reaction to this month's farmland nationalization was
despairing. In Harare, economic analyst John Robertson predicted the new
measures would have "a devastating effect" on the country's farm production.

Last month, the United Nations estimated that Zimbabwe would produce only
about half its 2 million-ton grain requirement this year. Having been a net
grain exporter, Zimbabwe now imports grain and receives emergency food
relief through U.N. agencies. With unemployment at 70 percent, poor people
are starving.

"In the long run," said Secretary of State Colin Powell last year, "Mugabe
and his minions will lose, dragging their soiled record behind them into
obscurity. But how long will it take?"

It is a question South Africa, the big dog on Africa's block, should help
answer. But having bought into Mugabe's pathetic racist rhetoric, Pretoria
stands aside.

Only when Africans unite to condemn tyranny and corruption, whether black or
white, can Africa reach its full potential.

This opinion of The Beacon News editorial board was first reported in The
San Diego Union-Tribune.
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State Plans to Amend Media Law

Media Institute of Southern Africa (Windhoek)

June 23, 2004
Posted to the web June 23, 2004

The government plans to amend sections of the Access to Information and
Protection of Privacy Act 2002.The amendments to the Act appeared in a
government gazette released on June 18, 2004.

Sections of the principal Act to be amended include Section 40 which
initially compelled members of the board of the commission to be appointed
from nominees of an association of journalists and an association of media

The proposed amendment reads,

Section 40 ("Appointment and composition of Media and Information
Commission') of the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act
[Chapter 10:27] (Act No. 5 of 2002) (is amended in subsection (2) by the
deletion of "and an association of media houses" and the substitution of "or
an association of media houses or both".

The amendment in effect now means that the nominations will be received from
either or both such types of associations.

Section 83, which prohibits unaccredited or suspended journalists from
practicing, has been amended so as to provide a penalty provision, which is
presently absent.

The amendment reads:

Any person who contravenes this subsection (1) or (2) shall be guilty of an
offence and liable to a fine not exceeding level seven or to imprisonment
for a period not exceeding two years or both such fine and such

The Bill also seeks to amend paragraph 4 of the Fourth Schedule of the Act
that deals with the dismissal or suspension of members of the MIC, so as to
provide for the appointment of an Independent Disciplinary Committee to
determine whether any member of the commission suspended by the Minister for
misconduct should be dismissed.
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'Prison guards abused Zim 70'
23/06/2004 20:31  - (SA)

Harare - Zimbabwe state lawyer, Lawrence Phiri, called 12 prison guards to
the front of the court at the trial of 70 suspected mercenaries arrested in
Zimbabwe, saying they were accused of assaulting some of the suspected

"These gentlemen are charged with assault of some of the mercenaries" said

Zimbabwe's Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa ordered a probe into the
incident in April in which eighteen of the suspected mercenaries were
allegedly beaten and doused with water by the guards.

The 12 were ordered to appear for trial on July 13.

The trial of 70 suspected mercenaries arrested in Zimbabwe for allegedly
plotting a coup in Equatorial Guinea will begin on July 19, the judge said
on Wednesday.

The 70 men were arrested on March 7 when their plane was making a stopover
in Harare to pick up weapons, allegedly en route to Equatorial Guinea to
topple long-time President Teodoro Obiang Nguema.

"You come back to court on the 19th of July at nine in the morning for
trial," Magistrate Mishrod Guvamombe told the defendants.

The men, who are being held and tried at a maximum security prison outside
Harare, deny plotting a coup and maintain they were on their way to the
Democratic Republic of Congo to guard a diamond mine.

Most of the men are from South Africa, Namibia and Angola, although they
were all travelling on South African passports.

Lawyers representing the families of the alleged soldiers of fortune failed
earlier this month to force the South African government to seek their
extradition from Zimbabwe and put them on trial at home.

The families are seeking to appeal that decision before the constitutional

A handful of family members were present at Wednesday's hearing, and the
wife of one of the detained men said a trial date had not done much to
relieve her anxiety.

"I'm still frightened. I don't know what to expect. There are so many
rumours flying around" she said.

If convicted, the men could be fined Z$200 000 (US$37) for attempting to
obtain weapons or sentenced to five years in jail.
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The opposition MDC accused the judicary of sidelining electoral disputes

JOHANNESBURG, - Zimbabwe's main opposition party on Wednesday accused the
country's judiciary of "deliberately sidelining" electoral disputes.

In a recent report the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) noted that 14 of
the 39 electoral challenges filed by the party since the 2000 parliamentary
poll had not been heard by the High Court.

"It has been four years since the last poll, but to date there remain
several disputed seats still unresolved. The delay is no coincidence, but a
clear indication that the work of the judiciary continues to be politically
influenced," MDC information officer, Nkanyiso Maqueda, told IRIN.

The MDC is challenging parliamentary election results in constituencies
where it lost to the ruling ZANU PF party on grounds of irregularities that
include pre-election violence.

Judicial authorities have attributed the delays to a heavy backlog of both
civil and criminal cases. The High Court is currently operating at
half-strength because a number of judges have resigned in recent years.

"Overall, the backlog is mainly due to the shortage of judicial officers in
both the magistrate's courts and the High Court. But, regarding electoral
disputes, it is a concern when a matter of significant public interest
appears to be taking long to be finalised. It doesn't augur well for the
administration of justice," Joseph James, president of the Zimbabwe Law
Society commented.

There could be various reasons for the delays. "Some of the cases may be
awaiting judgement, while others may be waiting for evidence to be heard.
There is also a possibility that one of the parties involved may not be
ready - each case must be assessed individually," James explained.

Following its recent success in the Lupane constituency by-election, the
ruling party is within two seats of a two-thirds majority in the 150-seat
parliament, and the right to amend the constitution, should it wish to do

The MDC won 57 of parliament's 120 elected seats in the 2000 vote, but five
of them have been lost to ZANU-PF in recent parliamentary by-elections.

The 150 seats include 30 that are appointed directly or indirectly by
Mugabe - eight provincial governors, 12 non-constituency MPs and ten chiefs
chosen by their peers and given final approval by the President.

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Three Suspected Armed Robbers Remanded in Custody

The Herald (Harare)

June 23, 2004
Posted to the web June 23, 2004


THREE members of a suspected notorious armed gang that caused terror in some
Harare suburbs and stole property worth more than $200 million were on
Monday brought to the Harare Magistrates' Courts on initial remand.

Elton Manyimo (34), Martin Geti (37) and Wilfred Chikololere (29) appeared
before magistrate Ms Memory Chigwaza who remanded them in custody.

On the first charge, which was allegedly committed on April 19 this year,
prosecutor Mr Bright Mugomeza said the trio and their accomplices Gerald
Chiro and Major Samanje alias Shepherd Mhizha, who are still at large, drove
to their victims' house in a Peugeot 405.

On arrival at a house in Avondale, the gang, armed with a pistol, allegedly
pounced on the elderly couple Mr Dennis and Mrs Leslie Stambolic aged 62 and

The gang, it is alleged, tied the couple's hands and legs with electrical
cables before they ransacked their house and looted property worth $50

The gang then ordered Mrs Stambolic upstairs to her bedroom where one of the
suspected robbers allegedly raped her.

Using the same method, the gang is alleged to have stolen property worth
more than $150 million at a house in Highlands.

The gang complained to the court that the police who arrested them assaulted

One of the suspects Chikololere, who was represented by Advocate Charles
Selemani submitted that he was severely assaulted by police from Harare
Central Homicide Section.

Adv Selemani said his client was arrested on Tuesday last week and since
then police officers made it impossible for him to have access to his

"I was denied the opportunity to see him (Chikololere) . . . they moved him
from one station to another," Adv Selemani said.

He said the action and conduct of the police officers was a clear violation
of the law and breach of the constitution.

"In terms of section 415 of the constitution, accused ought to be protected
from inhuman treatment. Such method of policing is not required by the law.
It is outside the constitution," he said.

Adv Selemani submitted that the method was not even sanctioned by police
standing orders.

"Accused persons need to be protected from inhuman treatment and torture.
Accused persons have a right of protection from the law," he said.

He said the conduct of the police officers should be investigated.

"The police cannot be the public prosecutor, the jury neither can they be
judges or magistrates in matters they are investigating."
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From The Star (SA), 23 June

Aids threat outweighs genocide, havoc of war

By Beauregard Tromp

Although there has been genocide in Sudan, terrorist attacks around the
world and wars across Africa, the lack of a simple meal makes Southern
Africa the site of the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today. The UN
special envoy for humanitarian needs in Southern Africa, James Morris,
recently returned from a visit to the Darfur region in Sudan where an
estimated 1,2-million people have been displaced in what has been described
as ethnic cleansing by government-backed militias. But he still believes
that the huge HIV/Aids rate and massive food shortages have left Southern
Africa worse off. "What is happening in Southern Africa represents the worst
humanitarian crisis in the world today," said Morris. HIV/Aids continues to
be the forerunner in exacerbating the problem, depriving countries of their
human capital. Most countries are losing more teachers and workers in the
agricultural sector than they are able to replace. Statistics gathered by
the various UN organisations indicate that more than 4-million children have
been orphaned due to Aids and that women constitute in excess of 60% of
those infected with the virus.

Morris, who has just returned from a four-country visit, spoke yesterday of
his deep disappointment at not being able to visit Zimbabwe, which was
suffering under one of the top five HIV/Aids pandemics in the world. The HIV
prevalence rate today stands at 34%. This is the main reason for the halving
of life expectancy in Zimbabwe to 33 years. The unavailability of key
government officials prevented a visit. In the past two years Morris had
visited President Robert Mugabe on six occasions and had worked "fairly
well" with him, he said. He refused to be drawn out on the Zimbabwe crisis,
apart from saying: "To go from production of 980 000 metric tons to
2,8-million metric tons is a remarkable turnaround, unprecedented anywhere
in the world." He was referring to Zimbabwe's projections of the maize
harvest this year. Morris also rejected Zimbabwean media speculation that
the World Food Programme (WFP) was using food aid as a political tool as
"rubbish". "I wish I could use stronger language. This sudden hullabaloo
suggesting we have any different focus or drive in our work is nonsense," he

He described the turnaround in agricultural production in Zambia as a real
success story but refused to be drawn on whether this was due to former
Zimbabwean farmers who had settled there after being kicked off their land
in Mugabe's schemes. Last year the WFP was able to buy 100 000 tons from
Zambia and a further 60 000 this year, he revealed. He attributed the
success to the hard work by the Zambian government to supply agricultural
inputs and the improved meteorological conditions. Morris said one of the
biggest challenges was to make the additional resources available through
the Global Fund and other sponsors. In Malawi more than 90% of posts for
physicians and 60% of nursing posts remained vacant because of lack of
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From SW Radio Africa, 22 June

Secret meeting

Emmerson Mnangagwa, long considered the successor to Robert Mugabe may have
been voted out of the running in the secret top level meeting. The issue of
a successor for Robert Mugabe allegedly took centre stage last Wednesday
when Speaker of Parliament Mnangagwa received a vote of no confidence at a
high level Zanu PF meeting in the Midlands. We received unconfirmed reports
that a team of top level Zanu PF officials gathered at Tshulu Tshanabe Lodge
outside Gweru to discuss the land issue. They were apparently surprised to
be woken up at midnight by local government minister Ignatius Chombo and
called to a meeting. Among them were John Nkomo, Didymus Mutasa, Rugare
Gumbo, Josiah Hungwe, Francis Nhema and July Moyo. The meeting allegedly had
the blessing of Mugabe himself. Our sources report that the minister of
Information and Publicity Jonathan Moyo was barred from attending as he was
too junior to be part of the succession discussion. Mnangagwa arrived
halfway through the proceedings, only to find out he had already been voted
out of contention for the number one spot in Zanu PF after Mugabe leaves.
Although no name was thrown into the ring as a possible successor, analysts
believe Ignatius Chombo, who has been flexing his muscles and running the
affairs of town councils, might be the new contender.
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From Business Day (SA), 23 June

Nedcor breaks off talks with Zimbabwe bank

Due-diligence probe sinks Trust Bank purchase

Financial Services Editor

Nedcor, SA's second-largest bank by assets, disclosed yesterday that its
purchase of Zimbabwe's Trust Bank was off. With problems in Zimbabwe's
banking sector, analysts saw the deal as a cheap entry into that market
ahead of an expected recovery. But they cautioned that Nedcor would be
unwise to take on more than it could handle due to the problems it faced at
home. Although no official statement has been released by Nedcor, spokesman
Don Bowden said it was "unlikely to go ahead". Nedcor divisional director
for Africa Mfundo Nkuhlu said yesterday Nedbank, a Nedcor subsidiary, would
not pursue Trust Bank. "The due-diligence study was completed, and on the
basis of that we felt advised not to go through with the transaction as
initially envisaged. That was the commitment we had," he said. "We have
advised the (Zimbabwean) central bank and Trust Bank management that we are
not pursuing it."

Earlier this month, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe said that negotiations had
collapsed, saying Trust Bank was technically insolvent. At the time Nedcor
said it had yet to finalise its due-diligence investigation, a normal
procedure in any merger or acquisition process. The plan was to merge Trust
Bank with Merchant Bank of Central Africa (MBCA) , which is controlled by
Nedbank and parent Old Mutual. The two were seen as compatible as both
competed in corporate and commercial banking and had similar client bases.
Nedbank holds almost 39% of MBCA, while Old Mutual Zimbabwe owns just under
23%. Trust Bank was one of five banks baled out by the Reserve Bank of
Zimbabwe's troubled banks fund, but was one of the country's top-rated local
banks before last year's banking crisis. It received an initial Z230bn from
the fund to save its collapsing operations. The loan had ballooned to Z645bn
by the beginning of this month. Coupled with hundreds of billions of almost
unrecoverable loans owed to it, this left Trust Bank practically bankrupt.

There could be other suitors for Trust Bank, however. Old Mutual rival First
Mutual owns 25% of Trust Bank's holding company, and put its resources up as
security for the liquidity support provided to Trust Bank. This is the
second collapse this week of a local bank's foray into Africa. Last week,
the Zambian government said negotiations for Absa to buy a 49% stake in
state-owned Zambia National Commercial Bank had broken off. Although Absa
had not received official notification of this, it said it would not pursue
the bank until an amicable resolution had been found with respect to the
finance it put up for Trans Sahara Trading to provide oil to Zambia. The
contract with the government was later cancelled, leaving Absa significantly
out of pocket. Despite walking away from Trust Bank, Nedcor remains intent
on growing its African operations. Nkuhlu said the group was looking at "one
or two options" in countries where it currently did not have a footprint. He
said it would again conduct duediligence investigations in the banking
environments in those countries.
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Press Group Criticizes Cyber Censorship
Isabelle Boucq
23 Jun 2004, 18:13 UTC

The Paris-based organization Reporters Without Borders says 72 people are in
prison around the world for expressing their views on the Internet. The
statistic is part of the group's third report on freedom of expression on
the Internet.
Authoritarian governments like China, Cuba and Saudi Arabia rank high on the
group's list of 50 countries that censor websites and routinely arrest what
are now called "cyber dissidents." But the report also criticizes
democracies like the United States and France for passing laws that curtail
freedom of expression on the Internet in the wake of the September 11

The report's author, Julien Pain, said it is important to draw attention to
such issues because as important as the Internet has become in world
communications, its problems do not get the attention they deserve.

"We want to attract people's attention [to] the importance of this media, of
the Internet, and the importance of fighting for its freedom. This is not
the case at the moment because everybody will fight for press freedom, but
nobody really cares about Internet freedom," he said.

The report details the situation of 50 countries around the world and gives
examples of censorship. In Cuba, for example, the report says last year at
least five journalists were convicted of writing what the government calls
counter-revolutionary articles for a U.S.-based website. The report says
they were sentenced to prison terms of up to 27 years.

The report also cites the cases of Iranian journalists repeatedly arrested
because of their online articles, of seven Vietnamese cyber dissidents
currently in prison and of 14 people arrested last November in Zimbabwe for
sending out an e-mail criticizing President Robert Mugabe.

"In dictatorships we all know that the dictators have the right to curtail
the freedom of expression, so of course it started with the press, the
regular media. But now they are trying to control the Internet very
tightly," said Mr. Pain. "That's why we have noticed in the past four years
this control on the Internet has been more efficient because dictators put
more and more money on the table and invest more in equipment to spy and to
track down cyber dissidents."

But Mr. Pain's report also criticizes democracies. "In democracies the
problem is that since September 11, democracies have had to fight against
terrorism, which is a goal we perfectly understand. [But] we think that it
should be restricted by judges because only judges can say what can be
censored, what can't be censored, what can be spied [on], [and] what person
can be spied [on] and what person can't be spied [on]," he said.

The report is particularly critical of the United States, saying it has
unclear procedures for determining when the government can eavesdrop on
Internet use, and that this sets a bad example to the rest of the world.

Launching its report this week, Reporters Without Borders also awarded its
second Internet Freedom Prize to Chinese dissident Huang Qi, who has been in
jail for four years for criticizing the Chinese government and writing about
the Tiananmen Square massacre on his website.

Report author Julien Pain said the organization hopes the prize will help
Huang Qi gain his freedom. "Last year the Tunisian who was awarded was
released five months after he was awarded. This prize I think is efficient
because it attracts people's attention and then the governments, they feel
like they have to do something about this person," he said.

But Mr. Pain also said Reporters Without Borders does not limit its
attention to the plight of imprisoned Internet journalists. He says because
the Internet allows everybody with online access to express themselves in
public, a cyber dissident could be anybody who decides to share his or her
views, and attracts the wrath of their government in the process.
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JAG CLASSIFIED: Updated 22nd June 2004

Please send any classified adverts for publication in this newsletter to:
JAG Job Opportunities <>

1.  Advert Received 2nd June 2004

Please can you advertise the following in your classifieds.
1 change over switch for generator. $3 mill.
phone 011607111

2.  Advert Received 3rd June 2004

Looking to buy wrought iron garden chairs.

If anyone is leaving and has any for sale please phone Cathy Banks - 073
2498 or 011 205487.

3.  Advert Received 3rd June 2004

Boat Wanted.
Wanted either a Falcon with 150 HP motor
Piranha for the River with 85HP motor,
Contact 011 862 857 or email
4.  Advert Received 4th June 2004


THE GOOD NEWS - since the last price list emailed in February, generally
Greencroft Butchery beef / pork prices have been constant & chicken prices
reduced! (however the cost of lamb has continued to rise).

REMEMBER - orders can be made simply by email; & your orders delivered!
5.  Advert Received 6th June 2004

We are looking for good homes for our pets.
1Boerboel Male, 2 Ridgeback Females, 1 small Daxie and 2 Cats. We would
like them to go to good homes. The dogs are very good watch dogs and are
very good with kids. if we can we would like the Daxie & 2 cats to go
together and the 3 Big dogs together.

Also, could a gent called Mark Evans call us back asap.

Ursula 011 231 403
Angus 011 862 338 ( this line until end of June.)
Home 883116.
6.  Advert Received 6th June 2004


Owners retiring lucrative fast food business for sale. Suit dynamic couple
not scared of work in an interesting town
Apply fax: +267 6597293 or email:

7.  Advert Received 7th June 2004

Do you have a desire to change your waist line, get rid of food
cravings, feel energized and have the ability to cope with the stresses and
strains of life. Phone Liz 091 913 460

8.  FOR SALE - White Mercedes 190E, automatic, 1994 model, one lady
owner, serviced by Merc dealer, 90,000 km mileage. A bargain!

Phone C Peech 494374
150KVA 1538 hrs with 2200 litre fuel tank Z$ 85 000 000.00
60KVA 2400 hrs with 2200 litre fuel tank Z$ 35 000 000.00

ONE X MASSEY FERGUSON 240 TRACTOR z$ 20 000 000.00

One X four wheel farm trailer Z4 5 000 000.00

One X two wheel all steel farm trailer with sides Z$ 3 500 000.00

One X two wheel trailer low bed Z$ 1 600 000.00

Steel cattle sides for Nissan CPB 12 lorry and trailer - very good
condition Z$ 8 000 000.00

Single and double fluorescent lights single Z$ 150 000.00
                                                          double Z$ 250

Water pumps various large and small, irrigation pipes, welder

Tel 04-335681 or cell 011-410118
10.  Advert received 7 June 2004

 Chemicals :
Agrithin: 1 x 5l @ $100 000
Alachlor: 5 x 20l @ $400 000 each

2. Building materials :
2 x E1H window-frames @ $100 000 each
11 x C2H window-frames @ $180 000 each
1 x Compound door @ $350 000
11 x Steel-press doors & frames (4.5'') @ $550 000 each

3. Kuhn multi-disc (4) rotary mower - offers

4. Universal 500 (Mushandi) tractor - reasonable condition - $15m

5. Olsen 6' steam-boiler, re-tubed - $13m

Contact Pete Kabell : 04-300129 or 091-253985

11.  Advert received 8 June 2004
If anyone has a rudd scale that they are wanting to sell please contact me
at the following numbers:

091236316 - Debi
091236317 - Wendy
09- 230452 or 09-230453
12.  Advert received 8 June 2004
Looking for aerial for Agric radio base set plus cradle, speaker and power
lead for set in vehicle.  If you are looking to sell any of the above at a
reasonable price please contact Linda 0732777 or 011 615 367.
13.  Frizzle Bantams for Sale, as well as a few cross breeds.
They are beautiful and make excellent pets.
$20,000.00 each.

1 Monarch 4 Plate Gas Stove, eye level grill + gas bottle

Wanted Six layers, any colour.

Please contact: Lindsay on 495430 or 011604536
14.  Advert received 14 June 2004


Rita - 3 years spayed female (Mum)
Sabi - 8 months un-spayed female (cross English Bull terrrie)- (daughter)

Both are fantastic with kids
As they are mother and daughter they must go together. We are very fussy
about who they go to!!! i.e Caviar and Smoked Salmon for dinner (Jokes)

Please phone Gareth or Kim on 741561
15.  Advert received 15 June 2004

WANTED urgently is a working/non-working colour TV and/or VCR.
Kindly phone Joel on 04-751202 or 023 288454 email
16.  Advert received 16 June 2004

Looking for a laptop computer.
Please e-mail me with details to the following address
17.  Advert received 15 June 2004
PLEASE if anyone out there has DRIFTWOOD that I could buy or have I would
be grateful and collect.
Telepone Linda 091321640 or evenings 251377
18.  Advert received 17 June 2004
DO YOU WANT TO SELL: Antique furniture or nice looking bits unsuitable for
auction houses. OR home industry articles that look unique.  Our shop will
do it for you in Avondale. Contact Nabelle on 091321640

JAG Hotlines:
(011) 612 595 If you are in trouble or need advice,
(011) 205 374
(011) 863 354 please don't hesitate to contact us -
(011) 431 068
                                we're here to help!
263 4 799 410 Office Lines
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