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

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Sun Herald - South Mississippi

††††† Posted on Tue, Jun. 29, 2004

††††† In Africa south of the Sahara, much of the poverty is self-inflicted

††††† By Walter Williams

††††† Did you learn that the United States is rich because we have bountiful
natural resources? That has to be nonsense. Africa and South America are
probably the richest continents in natural resources but are home to the
world's most miserably poor people. On the other hand, Japan, Hong Kong,
Taiwan and England are poor in natural resources, but their people are among
the world's richest.

††††† Maybe your college professor taught that the legacy of colonialism
explains Third World poverty. That's nonsense as well. Canada was a colony.
So were Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong. In fact, the richest country
in the world, the United States, was once a colony. By contrast, Ethiopia,
Liberia, Tibet, Sikkim, Nepal and Bhutan were never colonies, but they are
home to the world's poorest people.

††††† There's no complete explanation for why some countries are affluent
while others are poor, but there are some leads. Rank countries along a
continuum according to whether they are closer to being free-market
economies or whether they're closer to socialist or planned economies. Then,
rank countries by per-capita income. We will find a general, not perfect,
pattern whereby those countries having a larger free-market sector produce a
higher standard of living for their citizens than those at the socialist end
of the continuum.

††††† What is more important is that if we ranked countries according to how
Freedom House or Amnesty International rates their human-rights guarantees,
we'd see that citizens of countries with market economies are not only
richer, but they tend to enjoy a greater measure of human-rights
protections. While there is no complete explanation for the correlation
between free markets, higher wealth and human-rights protections, you can
bet the rent money that the correlation is not simply coincidental.

††††† With but few exceptions, African countries are not free, and most are
basket cases. My colleague, John Blundell, director of the London-based
Institute of Economic Affairs, highlights some of this in his article
"Africa's Plight Will Not End With Aid" in The Scotsman (6/14/04).

††††† Once a food-exporting country, Zimbabwe stands on the brink of
starvation. Just recently, President Robert Mugabe declared that he's going
to nationalize all the farmland. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to
figure out that the consequence will be to exacerbate Zimbabwe's food
problems. Sierra Leone, rich in minerals, especially diamonds, with highly
fertile land and home to the best port site in West Africa, has declined
into a condition of utter despair. It's a similar story in nearly all of
south-of-Sahara Africa. Its people are generally worse off now than they
were during colonialism both in terms of standard of living and human-rights
protections.

††††† John Blundell says that the institutions Westerners take for granted
are entirely absent in most of Africa. Africans are not incompetent; they're
just like us. Without the rule of law, private property rights, an
independent judiciary, limited government and an infrastructure for basic
transportation, water, electricity and communication, we'd also be a
diseased, broken and starving people.

††††† What can the West do to help?

††††† The worst thing is more foreign aid. For the most part, foreign aid is
government to government, and as such, it provides the financial resources
that allow Africa's corrupt regimes to buy military equipment, pay off
cronies and continue to oppress their people. It also provides resources for
the leaders to set up "retirement" accounts in Swiss banks. Even so-called
humanitarian aid in the form of food is often diverted. Blundell reports
that Mugabe's thugs rip labels off of wheat and corn shipments from the
United States and Europe and re-label them as benevolence from the dictator.

††††† Most of what Africa needs the West cannot give, and that's the rule of
law, private property rights, an independent judiciary and limited
government. The one important way we can help is to lower our trade
barriers.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
††††† Dr. Walter E. Williams, author and syndicated columnist, is professor
of economics at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. You may write to him
at Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Suite 700, Los Angeles, CA
90045.
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Beverley Closes Six Branches

The Herald (Harare)

June 29, 2004
Posted to the web June 29, 2004

Leonard Makombe And Farai Mabeza
Harare

BEVERLEY Building Society has closed down six of its branches across the
country becoming the third financial institution to downsize operations in
24 months.

While officials at the financial institution could not shed light on the
reason behind the closure of the branches, it is understood that it is part
of the ongoing restructuring at the building society.

Beverly Building Society has made known its intentions to retrench some of
its workers in a restructuring programme.

Barclays Bank and Standard Chartered Bank have also closed down some of
their branches as part of restructuring. These branches were snapped by new
entrants into the financial sector who include Royal and Century banks.

Beverly Building Society said it would, with effect from tomorrow, close
down Mutare's Sakubva Branch, Banket, Ruwa, Stanley House in Harare and the
Hillside and Khami Road Branches in Bulawayo. Customers using the affected
branches have been asked to switch to those that have not been closed down.

However, some of the affected branches such as Banket, were located in
isolated areas and the affected customers now have to travel long distances
for services.

Most of the financial institutions have, of late, argued that the wide
branch network is not consistent with the modern times where information
technology has made banking easier.

They would rather offer new and varied products than expand on their branch
networks.

However, there are suggestions that the closure could be a result of the
knock financial institutions have suffered since the beginning of the year.

Beverley has been facing a number of problems which may be related to the
recent events.

Earlier this year, most of the branches of the building society in Harare
were closed for two days as workers embarked on a work stoppage demanding
higher salaries.

At one time, customers of the building society faced problems accessing
their salaries as the financial institution failed to process them on time.

This resulted in long queues both inside the banking halls and at the
automated teller machines. The situation was made worse by the withdrawal of
the building society from Zimswitch, a system electronically linking most of
the banks and building societies in the country.

A majority of the low income earners use building societies for their
savings and processing of salaries and other payments.
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29 June 2004

PRESIDENT MORGAN TSVANGIRAIíS TUESDAY MESSAGE TO THE PEOPLE OF ZIMBABWE

One of the main tasks of the democratic movement, led by the MDC, shall be to break the numerous classifications and to deal with the lexicon designed to divide our nation into restless sorts, often checking out their past in order to fit into a Zanu PF wished-for society.

A new political language is in place, with words and nationalistic slogans carelessly thrown around to describe opponents, dissenting voices and anyone who questions the status quo.

For a nation that has been independent for 24 years, it is unfortunate that we have a regime that still sees more than half the population as unpatriotic puppets of what was once colonial Europe.

We must learn from our experiences in the past five years. No quantity of demonisation of the MDC and its leadership will sway public opinion from the obvious mismanagement in our country today. Whatever the investment and propaganda against the democratic movement, whether it links us to Tony Blair or George W. Bush, such an effort can never offer a plausible replacement or comfort to the suffering and the nuisance being felt daily by the people, including Zanu PF adherents.

Under the new language, which many no longer listen to, the regime has crafted and imposed labels on ordinary people. The regime has put us all into various societal booths: enemies, new farmers, traitors, puppets, war veterans, whites, blacks and saboteurs. The list is endless. The idea is ensure that everybody is on a state leash for easier control and monitoring.

Unfortunately, the national effect of such a divide-and-rule scheme has polarized our society, generated mistrust and seriously backfired. The majority, especially young people, do not want to associate with Zanu PF Ė hence the flight of skills and the lack of respect for government initiatives.

Young Zimbabweans, who constitute 60 percent of our population, believe, and they are right, in the view that international solidarity is an international right and a universal phenomenon.

If the people in London, New York, Karachi, Mexico City or Cairo want to express their solidarity with starving or suffering Zimbabweans, why should they try to stop them?

Our nation has earth-shattering grievances arising from a crisis of governance spanning over two decades. Suffering Zimbabweans have no power to stop anyone making a pronouncement to the effect that that person feels for them, whether that person is regarded as an enemy or friend of Zanu PF.

The only way to avoid a permanent posting on the international radar requires that a regime must deal with the issues at home. International criticism and international censure always flourish in undemocratic and tyrannical environments. Donít blame the MDC or those who publicly express their support for the MDC cause, no matter who they are.

The society we seek to build is radically different. In concert with civil society, we shall search, promote and establish a Zimbabwe that is open to all. We shall put in place mechanisms that recognize our historical, traditional and cultural diversity with a view to unite all against poverty, under-development and political corruption.

We may differ but our differences should never be allowed to culminate in a wanton termination of life or to lead to a complete destruction of Zimbabwe in the manner we are witnessing today.

The need for a new, tolerant society is long overdue in Zimbabwe. We suffered a serious setback in 1999 when we missed an opportunity to embark on a comprehensive constitutional reform process because of Mugabeís interference in our sovereignty.

At the time, just as is the case today, there was a national consensus that the Lancaster House Constitution was a flawed deed. We felt political reform could begin with a replacement of that document with a home-grown constitution whose potential for far reaching political reforms was unlimited.

Zimbabweans are ready for principled, meaningful change. They have rejected previous attempts to short-change that ideal through cosmetic adjustments to their political life. They demonstrated this new mood way back in February 2000 when they rejected Mugabeís doctored new constitution.

At the time, they thought they would deal with the regime in the June 2000 Parliamentary election. That was not to be. When they challenged the results in 37 constituencies, they still had the hope and faith in the judicial process, only to be let down again. Nothing came out of it. The bulk of the challenges still have to be heard, eight months before another Parliamentary election. Then came March 2002. You all know what happened. Mugabe vowed that if he did not win, then nobody should.

The new Zimbabwe, the new dispensation, the new society we seek to encourage will make it impossible for any political leader to drive the nation onto a dangerous cliff purely for personal glory.

Institutional safeguards, worked out by the people and backed by the law, will be firmly in place to put off any aspiring dictator keen to hatch personal survival plans that drove Zimbabwe into an abyss.

As agents for change, the MDC remains focussed, courageous and unstoppable in its quest for such a society where an individualís character drives his or her contribution to national development, not his/her race, ethnicity or political connections. We are determined to harness the creating energies of all our citizens and to produce a political climate that minimises insecurity and curtails the flight of skills from our homeland.

Today, the nation is under siege from a cornered Mugabe as he resists political reforms and searches for political relevance in a sceptical society that doubts his patriotism. The question uppermost in the peopleís minds is how they allowed Mugabe to grant himself an all-powerful presidency. We have learnt a critical lesson and the desire for devolution of power shall remain etched onto our hearts and minds in the new society we seek to develop.

An MDC government will have to pay special attention to Constitutional and political reform as a matter of urgency in order to regenerate the faith and confidence in Zimbabwe.

Our intention is to achieve a better life for all through our economic programme, RESTART, whose implementation is inextricably linked to our comprehensive political renaissance project. At the centre of our effort would be national unity and integration. Once that is achieved, issues like hunger, disease, unemployment, education, HIV/Aids and other recovery impediments would be easier to tackle.

We are concerned about the current slide into subsistence agriculture. The closure of every pillar of the economy has made life difficult for the people in the communal lands who, traditionally, relied on supplementary earnings from the urban areas for basic support.

We are in favour of a workable system of government, supported by a strong and independent Parliament. We need to restore the dignity of our judiciary, respect property rights and return the country to the rule of law.

Our political reform agenda seeks to set up institutions with sufficient teeth to restrain any wayward administration from trampling on the rights of the people. We shall introduce a broad, comprehensive Bill of Rights to protect fundamental rights and freedoms, supervised and administered by non-partisan statutory bodies with defined powers of correction and censure.

The programme will guarantee adequate provisions and safeguards for free and fair elections; for devolution of governmental powers; and for an inclusive political culture that sets the basis of the recognition of our diversity and national unity.

We have argued in the past that no free and fair election is possible when political activity and democratic space are at premium. Our rights to assemble, to move around and to communicate have been severely curtailed.

The unofficially published proposals (see The Herald, 26 June 2004) on electoral reform, as I warned in my message last week, are still miles away from our basic needs. Let us not deceive ourselves that internal and external recognition and legitimacy can be achieved through half-baked and cosmetic measures designed to deceive the people. Our campaign for sound electoral standards, therefore, continues unabated.

A faster way of moving out of the current political impasse requires discussions around our electoral conditions. We are prepared to support an amendment the existing Lancaster Constitution in order to work out conditions for a genuinely free and fair election that will give birth of a legitimate government.

Everything will revolve around the level of confidence we raise in the electoral process. As long as pockets of suspicion continue to linger around the country as to the efficacy of the electoral process, we risk wasting time with this or that experiment. The wounds are too deep.

An Independent Electoral Commission needs no controversial definition. SADC and the United Nations are willing to assist us put together such a body to the satisfaction of all. There can never be any confidence in our elections as long as we are denied a new election management institution mandated, by law and by the people, to attend to all election needs in an impartial and non-partisan manner.

The electoral process must be open and transparent. Unless someone has something to hide, genuine elections are open to observation and endorsement by all interested persons and parties regardless of their country of origin. Players must never choose their own referees.

A transparent election management system operating in an open environment in which the public media plays a critical role in exposing various alternatives to the people is an absolute necessity in our democracy. Our concerns are a basic right.

A free and fair election will open up opportunities for Zimbabwe to embrace all. We shall break down the current compartments, which inhibit openness and stifle national debate.

Together, we shall win.

Morgan Tsvangirai

President.

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News24

MDC UK relations 'treason'
29/06/2004 20:28† - (SA)

Harare - Heated debate erupted in Zimbabwe's parliament on Tuesday when the
ruling party said opposition lawmakers should be probed for treason for
allegedly working with former colonial power Britain.

President Robert Mugabe's ruling party lawmakers last week said they wanted
to investigate a recent statement by British Prime Minister Tony Blair that
his government was working with Zimbabwe's opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC).

"I call for the MDC, and all members of the MDC, to be investigated, and if
possible be charged with treason and suspended from parliament," Phillip
Chiyangwa of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front
(Zanu-PF) told parliament.

He accused the MDC of working "in concert with foreign and dangerous
powers - (including) Britain."

The debate came after Information Minister Jonathan Moyo last week revealed
in parliament that Blair had told the British House of Commons that his
government was working "closely with the MDC on the measures that we should
take in respect of Zimbabwe."

The ruling party said this was evidence that the MDC is a front for Britain,
which it consistently accuses of wanting to oust the Mugabe government.

Britain, along with the United States and the European Union, have imposed
targeted travel and financial restrictions on Mugabe and dozens of his close
associates for alleged human rights abuses.

Opposition lawmaker Tendai Biti, defending his party, has said the ruling
party has only itself to blame for its "self-imposed sanctions through
misgovernance and misrule".

Zimbabwe remains deeply politically divided and international efforts to
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Helen Suzman Foundation

††††† al-Qaeda and the Zimbabwe nexus

††††† RW Johnson ponders the existence of a political triad linking Osama
bin Laden and Muammar Qadaffi via Robert Mugabe.

††††† On 7 August 1998 al-Qaeda suicide bombers driving trucks loaded with
explosives crashed - simultaneously - into the United States Embassies in
Nairobi (Kenya) and Dar-Es-Salaam (Tanzania). Between them they killed at
least 258 people and injured over 5 000 others. These twin assaults
indicated a new level of ambition in al-Qaeda's strategy. Clinton's
response - lobbing a few Cruise missiles at suspected al-Qaeda installations
in Afghanistan and Sudan - was clearly viewed by Osama Bin Laden as a mere
slap on the wrist. What the attacks had shown was that a few suicide bombers
using everyday means of transport as a delivery mechanism could achieve
complete surprise and inflict thousands of casualties on two or more targets
at once by carefully co-ordinated action. With this al-Qaeda had found the
weapon for which it had been searching - and which it was to use again with
even greater effect on 11 September 2001.

††††† On 25 August 1998, just eighteen days after the bombs in Kenya and
Tanzania had been detonated, a pipe bomb exploded in the Planet Hollywood
restaurant on Cape Town's Waterfront, killing one and wounding 27. The
police concluded from the fact that the target had sounded American and that
a pipe bomb had been used that this was probably the work of Pagad. But no
one was ever apprehended for the atrocity despite the fact that the ANC
minister for safety and security, Sydney Mufamadi, had announced that the
police were closing in and that an arrest was expected at any moment. Later
Mufamadi changed tack, seeming almost to blame the US for the bomb and
suggested that it was a predictable reprisal for the Cruise missile attack
on Sudan.

††††† The FBI was more successful, quickly arresting three suspects for the
African bombings, Mohamed Saddeck Odeh, Rashed Daoud Al-'Ouhali and Wali
al-Hage, the latter having earlier served as personal secretary to Bin Laden
himself. All three were flown to the US where they confessed that the
kingpin of the operation, Haroun Fazil (26), had rented a villa outside
Nairobi where the bomb had been constructed. Fazil had driven a white
pick-up truck and guided the lorry laden with explosives, driven by his
operatives, to the US Embassy. Straight after the bombing he had taken a
flight to his native Comoros Islands. The FBI, finding a record of a phone
call made from a Nairobi hotel to the Comoros, asked the help of the Comoros
government in tracing the call but clearly Fazil was tipped off for on 22
August he fled to Dubai just as the FBI arrived in the Comoros - where they
found incriminating CDs in his family home.

††††† What this event drew attention to was the existence of a Muslim
network running all the way down the East coast of Africa from the Persian
Gulf to Cape Town. South Africa itself has many attractions for Muslim
terrorists. Durban, after all, is home to Africa's richest Muslim community
and its International Islamic Centre was built thanks to a personal donation
by Bin Laden. Moreover, large sums of money can move easily through the
Durban Indian community to Mauritius, Nairobi or Cape Town - and, indeed, to
its overseas branches in London, Toronto and Sydney. One could be sure of
finding, within southern Africa, enough al-Qaeda sympathizers, enough money
and enough ways of making sure the two connected to make this region a major
front in the terrorist war. Moreover, the region boasts not one but two
failed states - the DRC and Zimbabwe - ideal breeding grounds for terrorism.
An ironic advantage of this situation, I discovered as I started to delve
into the question of terrorist links, was that some members of Mugabe's
secret police, the Central Intelligence Organization (CIO), were feeling
sufficiently disaffected to talk frankly, though of course anonymously,
about the subject.

††††† Mugabe's relationship with radical Islam goes back to 1978 when
Libya's president Muammar Qadaffi provided arms and training for his Zanla
guerrillas in Mozambique and, after Zimbabwean independence, trained 700
policemen for the new government. Mugabe was, however, well aware that
Libyan sponsorship of various terrorist groups made friendship with Qadaffi
extremely unwise and he kept relations formal and distant. This remained the
case even after the Reagan administration's air strike on Tripoli in 1986 in
retaliation for several terrorist outrages traceable to Libya. Qadaffi, who
had a son killed in the raid and narrowly escaped with his own life, was
badly shaken and arrived at the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Harare a few
months later thirsting for revenge and tried to enlist Mugabe and the NAM in
an anti-US crusade. Mugabe, hosting the summit, was carefully unreceptive
and Qadaffi stormed out in a huff.

††††† Relations between the two men remained cool until 1999. One CIO
officer, a man I shall call John, who had followed the relationship from his
desk in Harare, told me that what had really changed things was Mugabe's
resounding defeat by the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) in
the February 2000 constitutional referendum. Mugabe quickly approached
Qadaffi: with his regime now under threat and isolated on the world stage
Mugabe had far less to lose diplomatically than before. Qadaffi responded
positively and the relationship between the two leaders became extremely
close. Mugabe became increasingly sensitive to the currents and wishes of
the Muslim world, particularly since the Mahathir regime in Malaysia was one
of his few other friends.

††††† Through John I managed to make contact with 'Walter', a high-ranking
CIO officer who had served much of his career in Islamic countries,
including Libya. My own presence in Harare was a somewhat delicate matter -
I had watched the minister of information, Jonathan Moyo, denounce me on TV
and say that I was not welcome in the country - so Walter could hardly be
seen talking to me. Accordingly one night I was guided through the Harare
suburbs by a car whose driver I never saw to a place where a second car was
parked and which in turn led me to the house where I found Walter.

††††† Walter told me that he had not been long in the Middle East before he
had realized that Qadaffi's links with terrorism had not ceased after 1986
but had, perforce, merely become more discreet. Qadaffi, still animated by a
desire for revenge against America, maintained contact with and sometimes
funded a variety of Islamic terrorist groups but tried simultaneously to
ensure that the US would have no excuse to repeat the 1986 raid. "I was
surprised," Walter said. "Libya was still far more active in training and
assistance to terrorist groups than was commonly realized. They sometimes
trained such organizations in third countries such as Egypt and Yemen in
order not to attract further US attention towards Libya itself. Most of the
core Taliban fighters were Libyan-trained, you know. Libya also gave a lot
of support and training to the fundamentalist FIS (the Islamic Salvation
Front) in Algeria, and Algeria was sometimes used as an external training
ground by Libyan instructors, for example in the training of Hamas, most of
whose operatives are Libyan-trained. Hamas has very close links to Libya."
Lebanese and Iraqi groups had also benefited from Libyan training, as had
the PLO, he said. "From what I've seen the Libyans are the best in the world
at terrorist techniques".

††††† Naturally Qadaffi maintained links with al-Qaeda as well, Walter
averred, but he had never come close to exercising the quasi-control over it
that he did over some terrorist groups simply through the weight of his
patronage. But any Middle East terrorist group which needed help would be
likely to beat a path to Qadaffi's door. This was how it came about in
September 2000 that Qadaffi asked Mugabe to receive an al-Qaeda contact,
Zawahiri, Osama Bin Laden's Egyptian deputy. "In a way there'd been a dry
run," Walter said. "Mugabe already had close relations with Yasser Arafat
and when Arafat visited Mugabe in 1998 he brought with him six Lebanese
members of Islamic Djihad, one of the most fanatical anti-Zionist groups.
These guys were all men wanted by the Israelis but they stayed on in Harare
for two weeks after Arafat left before exiting via Zambia to Libya (a fact
later confirmed to me by another ex-CIO operative). Qadaffi learnt all about
this from Arafat - the two men are close - and clearly realized that Mugabe
might be willing to host wanted Arab terrorists."

††††† Ayman Mohammed Rabie al-Zawahiri is one of the world's most wanted
men. A former paediatrician, he is regarded as the brains of al-Qaeda -
besides his nine aliases the FBI also records that he is known as The Doctor
and The Teacher, as befits a man who has been a fundamentalist militant
since 1966. Fully one third of al-Qaeda's fighters come from his Al-Djihad
movement, including Mohammed Atta, the man who flew the first airliner into
the twin towers. But why should Qadaffi want to introduce Zawahiri to
Mugabe? "We surmised that what had happened was that Osama had sent Zawahiri
to Qadaffi to ask for his help," said Walter. "At the time, of course, we
were in the dark but after the September 11 attack everything suddenly made
sense. You see, this was exactly a year before 9/11 and al-Qaeda must have
been planning that event well over a year ahead. They must have known that
one of the things they needed most were safe bases far from the action.
Qadaffi could hardly provide anyone with that - he would be an immediate
suspect and anyway was eager to keep the Americans off his back. But
Zimbabwe would have occurred to him right away - by then he was very close
to Mugabe - and because we're not a Muslim country no one would suspect us."

††††† The logic was indeed obvious. From al-Qaeda's point of view Zimbabwe
would have had many advantages. Once an atrocity on the scale of September
11 took place the US would clearly scan the Muslim world for possible
al-Qaeda hideouts. Sudan and Afghanistan were clearly already potential
targets, as were African countries with large Muslim populations. But
Zimbabwe was not in that category - and it also had, as most African
countries don't, the modern communications and banking facilities al-Qaeda
needed. It was also conveniently close to Nairobi, Durban and Cape Town -
the three centres where Bin Laden already had links. In addition, Walter
said, there were small Afghan communities in both Cape Town and Port
Elizabeth - they had come there originally as seamen - and there was a
lively trade between them and a small number of Bolivians in both places:
hashish from the Khyber Pass was brought through Cape Town and traded for
cocaine from the Bolivians. These networks were also useful for smuggling
personnel or equipment, or laundering money.

††††† According to Walter, Zawahiri spent 4 to 5 days in Zimbabwe and met
with Mugabe and a number of ministers and top officials. His instructions
from Bin Laden were to acquire an al-Qaeda base in Zimbabwe where, far from
the scene of action, it could train its militants and plan its military
strikes: there are many large, remote farms in Zimbabwe where they could be
invisible. He offered large sums of money for Mugabe personally, with more
to follow. Zawahiri doubtless already had the September 11 action in mind
but would hardly have disclosed any details of that. The al-Qaeda strikes
against the US embassies in East Africa could not have left Mugabe in any
doubt as to what he was dealing with, nor that he was risking extreme US
displeasure - particularly since it must have been obvious that al-Qaeda was
planning further large-scale strikes against US targets. Later, Walter said,
Zawahiri returned a second time to Zimbabwe, this time staying for two
weeks. This return visit and Zawahiri's quick fade into invisibility are
perfectly consistent with what one would expect if, as Walter was inclined
to believe, al-Qaeda had then proceeded to construct some sort of safe-house
base in Zimbabwe. Walter, clearly nervous at every minute he spent in my
presence, slipped away into the night as soon as he'd finished.

††††† Mention of remote farms tied in with the fact that the growing Libyan
team in Zimbabwe had acquired a number of farms in the Zanu-PF heartland of
Mashonaland Central. As more Libyans arrived they moved straight to these
farms - so any Arab moving onto these farms would simply be assumed to be a
Libyan by any Zimbabwean. So could these farms be used for al-Qaeda purposes
too? My CIO contacts had also wondered if these farms were being used for
al-Qaeda purposes and had told me that when Qadaffi had passed through
Harare en route to the African Union meeting in Durban he had exhorted local
Muslim Asians to greater militancy and had even threatened to have Pagad
strong-arm men sent up from Cape Town - with whom, it seems, he was already
in touch - to knock them into line if necessary. They also reminded me that
almost on the eve of 9/11 Mugabe had been Qadaffi's guest in Tripoli for the
32nd anniversary of Libya's "national revolution". In the end I managed to
track down the relevant issue of Mugabe's mouthpiece, The Herald.

††††† Saturday, 1 September 2001 had found Mugabe in Tripoli where Qadaffi
called on his assembled African allies "to support the hero, president
Mugabe, since Zimbabwe is a strategic country". But Qadaffi seems to have
remained close enough to al-Qaeda to have a pretty good idea that a major
blow was about to be struck against the Americans - this was just ten days
before 9/11 - for he openly boasted of Bin Laden's prowess and mocked the US
for failing to catch him after the bombing of the US embassies in East
Africa:

††††† "We no longer wage war with the old weapons. Now they can fight you
with electrons and viruses. The crazy world powers that have invested huge
amounts of money in weapons of mass destruction have found themselves unable
to fight the new strain of rebellion. As a simple example, the USA is unable
to fight someone called Osama Bin Laden. He is a tiny man, weighing no more
than 50 kg. He has only a Kalashnikov rifle in his hands. He doesn't even
wear a military uniform. He wears a jalabiyah (Arab robe) and turban and
lives in a cavern, eating stale bread. He has driven the USA crazy, more
than the former Soviet Union did. Can you imagine that?"

††††† This passage - quoted approvingly in The Herald - suggests that
Qadaffi had been in recent contact with Bin Laden, was aware of his living
conditions in the caves of Afghanistan and also knew that some fiendish new
strike, employing unconventional weapons, was about to hit the USA. It seems
quite possible that Qadaffi imparted what he knew to Mugabe for he must have
realized that any such strike would have major implications for anyone who
had been lending assistance to the likes of Zawahiri.

††††† When the September 11 strike took place Qadaffi quickly distanced
himself from it as publicly as he could, clearly fearing US reprisals.
Mugabe himself said nothing - but within the CIO in Harare there was panic.
"Those of us who knew about the contacts with Zawahiri were scared stiff,"
Walter had told me. "We thought this might be the end of everything. We had
visions of B-52s over Harare."

††††† The printing of Qadaffi's 1 September 2001 speech in The Herald had
caught the eye of several MDC members. "When September 11 occurred I went
back and looked at it again," one of them told me. "Then we noticed an
Afghan we call Mr Moosa." Moosa, who was in the motor trade, had got into a
trifling dispute with a florist near his premises over parking spaces.
Amazingly, the CIO immediately materialized and warned off the florist: Mr
Moosa was, they said, a very important person and under the government's
protection. The same happened when some of Moosa's workers threatened a
strike. Again the CIO arrived in force to warn the workers that they had
better not dream of upsetting a person enjoying president Mugabe's
protection. "We managed to get through to a person in the ministry of
foreign affairs," my MDC contact told me. "He confirmed that Moosa was a
special case and that 'we're looking after him'. For us that was virtual
confirmation that he was effectively the Afghan - and thus, at that time,
the Taliban -ambassador, perhaps even the al-Qaeda ambassador. He clearly
has a hot-line to Mugabe which in turn means they have an on-going deal."
They then discovered that Moosa's office did no actual business."It was just
a front company, providing a phone, fax, e-mail, a bank account and it took
delivery of containers. There couldn't be an open Taliban embassy here, so
they had this disguised one instead."

††††† One of the MDC activists deputed to watch Moosa was 'Richard', who
works out every morning in a Harare gym. In early September 2001 Richard
noticed that Moosa and two Afghan companions had begun to frequent the same
gym. On 12 September 2001, the day after the attack on the twin towers, he
walked across the gym to where Moosa's party were exercising and asked them
what they thought of the previous day's events. "They were vehemently
anti-American and clearly pro-Taliban," Richard told me. "They said the
Americans had got exactly what they deserved. They seemed to be bursting
with a mixture of elation and bitterness. To be frank I think they blurted
out more than they meant to because they disappeared from the gym for a few
days after that.

††††† "Then in the week following they reappeared, this time with eight
other Afghans. These guys looked tired, as if they'd been travelling, which
I guess they had," Richard reported. "One of them was wearing a Tamil Tiger
T-shirt. My immediate guess was that these were escaping Taliban or
al-Qaeda. I've had military training myself and these men were fighters. If
you're a fighter you've got to stay fit, even if you're stressed and
travelling. That's why I think they were at the gym. They only came that
once and then disappeared."

††††† At this I went back to another CIO source who put out feelers among
his former colleagues in the CIO. One of them, he confirmed to me a few days
later, had told him that in mid-September he had been asked to produce ten
false passports for the same number of Libyans. These were delivered on 20
September. When I queried whether the recipients were genuinely Libyans it
became clear that all that was really known was that they had previously
been travelling on Libyan passports. The tie-up between these ten passports
and the eleven men seen by Richard at the gym hardly needs emphasis,
particularly since Richard must have seen them in the week of 12 to 19
September - as they waited for their new passports, with which they could
then leave Zimbabwe with fresh identities.

††††† One also has to remember that Zimbabwean military involvement in the
Democratic Republic of Congo had given Mugabe and the top Zanu-PF elite
control over several diamond mines there, including a joint venture with Al
Shanfari's Oryx Group in the Senga Senga mine. According to a confidential
study prepared by Kroll Associates in 2002, "Al Shanfari and Oryx launder
diamonds for several Lebanese traders linked to al-Qaeda". Thus here too
there was a direct - and profitable - relationship between Mugabe and
al-Qaeda, providing, incidentally, a route through which payment for other
services could also be made. In fact al-Qaeda involvement with blood
diamonds goes back some way before 9/11. Two al-Qaeda operatives named by
the Washington Post (3 November 2001) as having been involved in the DRC
since the mid-1990s are Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani and Fazul Abdullah Mohammed.
Ghailani, a Tanzanian, was also the man who bought the truck used in the
truck-bombing of the US embassy in Dar-Es-Salaam in 1998 while Fazul turns
out to be one of the many aliases used by Haroun Fazil, the mastermind
behind the Nairobi embassy bombing.

††††† Thus both the key architects of the East African embassy bombings
emerged from an al-Qaeda network active in southern Africa for some years
before that, one which will have had many points of contact with the ruling
Zimbabwean elite. This throws a new light on Zawahiri's alleged visits to
Zimbabwe prior to 9/11 - he was clearly travelling to an area in which he
already had operatives and at least a rudimentary infrastructure. This would
certainly have increased the likelihood that al-Qaeda would have wanted to
use Zimbabwe for the transit-and-laundering role we have seen.

††††† Another straw in the wind was the revelation that closed circuit TV
cameras within the Planet Hollywood restaurant in Cape Town had recorded the
image of a known al-Qaeda suspect lolling against the restaurant's bar a
month before the bomb-blast there. The police, who identified the man as a
Moroccan based in Zimbabwe, strangely refused to act on this information. It
is tempting to link this attitude with Pretoria's rapid volte face on the
issue of 9/11. By January 2002 ANC pressure on ex-president Mandela had
forced him publicly to recant his previous condemnation of Bin Laden, while
deputy president Zuma announced that the ANC no longer saw 9/11 as a
terrorist act but as a blow in a wider struggle against imperialism. He
simultaneously denounced Britain and America for their war on the Taliban
which, he said, was aimed "against innocent Afghan civilians". Given
president Mbeki's support for president Mugabe it is possible that Pretoria
was not keen to see a line of enquiry opened up in the Planet Hollywood
affair which led back to the presence of al-Qaeda activists in Zimbabwe.

††††† In Harare again in late 2003 I was struck by the US embassy posters
offering a $2 million reward for Haroun Fazil. Quite clearly, the FBI
believe either that he may be in Zimbabwe or that there may be people there
who know him. I decided that this merited a visit to Zimbabwean CID
headquarters in the vast police camp adjacent to Mugabe's presidential
palace. I eventually found the office I was looking for, with a Wanted
poster of Fazil from Interpol - and a CID poster showing a copy of Fazil's
passport. For, it emerges, Fazil travelled to Nairobi to carry out the
bombings which were to kill and maim thousands from Harare, on a Zimbabwean
passport.

††††† The possibility that Zimbabwe may have provided some sort of support
base for both the East African and 9/11 atrocities - perhaps even for the
Planet Hollywood bombing too - is perhaps not surprising. Mugabe has, after
all, not scrupled to use terror against his own people. The real question is
whether South Africa's NIA has taken note of what is happening and whether
president Mbeki, in the strong support he has lent Mugabe, has realized the
full implications of what he is doing.
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Zanu-PF Elects New Executive for Harare

The Herald (Harare)

June 28, 2004
Posted to the web June 28, 2004

Walter Nyamukondiwa And Tsungirirai Shoriwa
Harare

ZANU-PF Harare Province yesterday unanimously elected a new provincial
executive in a vote which saw Cde Amos Midzi, Cde Nyasha Chikwinya and Cde
Lloyd Bhunu coming in as chairpersons for the province, women's and youth
leagues respectively.

Cde Midzi, who has been Harare's interim secretary for information and
publicity, takes over from Dr Witness Mangwende who was the province's
interim chairman.

The elections, which were held at the Harare Polytechnic, also ushered in
Cde Christopher Chigumba as the vice-chairperson while Cde Joel Mazhamba was
elected secretary for the main wing.

Cde Chikwinya takes over from Cde Sabina Mangwende who was elected secretary
for information and publicity in the women's league.

Cde Chikwinya said her main task would be to economically empower women
since the women's league played such an important role in party affairs.

Also elected were Cde Tendai Savanhu (treasurer), Cde Daniel Masango
(commissar) and Cde Winston Dzawo (secretary for information and publicity).

Cde Thomas Machisa and Cde Mary Chatibura were elected vice-chairpersons of
the youth and women's leagues respectively.

Speaking soon after the elections, Cde Elliot Manyika, Zanu-PF national
political commissar, said he was happy with the manner in which the
elections had been conducted.

"The people have chosen their leaders and it is a true reflection that the
leaders are coming from the people.

"We did not impose any candidate on the electorate," said Cde Manyika.

Cde Midzi said he was humbled by the results of the election and pledged to
work with everyone in the province and for the good of the party.

"Our immediate challenges are the forthcoming 2005 parliamentary elections.
We need to work hard to reclaim a lot of ground we lost during the 2000
general elections," said Cde Midzi.

Cde Midzi said the interim executive, most of whose members were retained,
had already shown its capabilities since the ruling party had managed to
reclaim the Zengeza seat from the opposition MDC in March this year. Zanu-PF
secretary for youth in the Politburo Cde Absolom Sikhosana said the
elections provided a clear picture of the party's democratic dispensation,
adding that the new youth executive faced an urgent task of luring more
youths into the party.

Harare Province has been under the leadership of an interim executive since
2000 following dissolution of the Tony Gara-led executive.
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Pretoria News

††††† 94% want SA's policy on Zim to change
††††† June 29, 2004

††††† By Basildon Peta

††††† Viewers of a television debate who were polled on South Africa's
"quiet diplomacy" stance on Zimbabwe have voted overwhelmingly for it to
change.

††††† In doing so, they agreed with prominent businessman and analyst
Moeletsi Mbeki, brother of President Mbeki.

††††† In a live debate on the SABC 2 current affairs programme The Big
Question, Moeletsi Mbeki called for the South African government to adopt a
tougher stance on Robert Mugabe's regime, saying a democratic and stable
Zimbabwe was in South Africa's own interest.

††††† Moeletsi Mbeki urged the South African government to examine ways of
putting pressure on the Mugabe regime as its current policy of quiet
diplomacy had remained ineffective.

††††† At least 94% of the people polled via an SMS message facility during
the programme agreed with Moeletsi Mbeki that South Africa should take a
tougher stance on the human rights abuses in Zimbabwe, according to the
SABC.

††††† But it is not known how many people made the SMS calls.

††††† Former Education Minister Kader Asmal, who participated in the
programme, took a cautious approach, saying Zimbabwe was a sovereign country
and South Africa had no mandate to intervene in other countries.

††††† The ruling Zanu-PF party was represented by its spokesman in South
Africa, Gadzira Chirumanzu, who said reports of human rights abuses were
"lies" coming from British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

††††† Moeletsi Mbeki, who is deputy chairman of the South African Institute
of International Affairs, said he had worked as a journalist in Zimbabwe
during his exile years in the 80s and had witnessed Mugabe's regime murder
an estimated 20 000 opponents in Matabeleland region.

††††† Mugabe has steadfastly refused to publish the results of his own
commission of enquiry into the massacres.

††††† a.. The Democratic Alliance (DA) says President Mbeki needs urgently
to break the silence of quiet diplomacy towards Zimbabwe.

††††† It says the pressure for him to do so has increased in recent weeks
from various sources - within and outside Zimbabwe. Mbeki's own June 30
deadline for a resolution to the conflict in Zimbabwe is now only a day
away. It will clearly be missed, says the DA.

††††† Twenty human rights groups, led by Amnesty International, have called
for South Africa to put increased pressure on Zimbabwe over its human rights
record.
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Independent (UK)

A history of handovers (and their hangovers)
Britain's role in relinquishing power in Iraq evokes memories of other
withdrawals. Sometimes the process is fairly good-natured, sometimes not
By Kim Sengupta and Vicki Kellaway
29 June 2004

HONG KONG, JULY 1997

The Union Flag came down for the last time over Hong Kong on 1 July, 1997,
as 500 Chinese troops crossed the border into the New Territories. At
midnight, the digits of the countdown clock turned to zero, and Britain
departed.

Thge lease of Hong Kong and its adjoining territories from China had ended,
but the handover included safeguards for its six million population. Hong
Kong's Beijing-approved "mini-constitution" allowed a significant degree of
autonomy. The British Government assured the colony the agreement was
binding. More than 50,000 British passports were granted to heads of
families.

Supporters of the Hong Kong Democratic Party demonstrated on the night of
the handover and now accuse the Chinese government of reneging on its
promise. The Chinese barred 1.6 million mainland citizens who had residents'
rights in Hong Kong from exercising that right. They also staged the
"election" of the chief executive, Tung Chee-Hawa.

Seven years after the handover, only 24 members in the 60-seat legislative
chamber are popularly elected. Last year, 500,000 protesters in a democracy
rally forced Mr Tung to stop plans for an anti-subversion law regarded as
infringing civil liberties. He will also hold talks with democracy
campaigners.

RHODESIA, DECEMBER 1979

The British colony of Rhodesia and Nyasaland was heading for independence,
under black majority rule, when the whites of Rhodesia unilaterally declared
independence in the capital Salisbury on November 11, 1965.

This was followed by a bitter civil war between the minority white
government, led by Ian Smith, and black nationalists of ZANU and ZAPU. The
Rhodesians received substantial help from the apartheid regime in South
Africa, as well as, secretly, a number of Western intelligence services. The
guerrillas drew support from the Soviet Union, her allies, and neighbouring
African states.

The British government imposed sanctions on Rhodesia. However, Harold
Wilson's Labour government was accused of turning a blind eye to
sanctions-busting, especially by the big oil companies, and supplies
continued from South Africa.

In 1979, the Rhodesian government, exhausted by the conflict, and the
resultant haemorrhage of its white population, agreed to talks with the
nationalists, which were held in London. The Lancaster House agreement was
signed in December 1979.

The three African leaders were Joshua Nkomo, Bishop Abel Muzerawa and Robert
Mugabe. Of these, Mr Mugabe was deemed at the time, by the British
government, as the one best suited to run the newly independent multi-racial
country, Zimbabwe, as well as being friendly to the West.

On becoming leader, one of Mr Mugabe's first acts was to unleash the North
Korean-trained 5th Division on Matabeleland. Although there was widespread
publicity in the media to atrocities carried out by the troops on the Shona
tribes of the area, there were only muted protests from the British
government.

However, Mr Mugabe's later decision to expropriate, often violently, the
land of white farmers, and a campaign of harassment against opposition
leaders, led to British government condemnation of his rule.

Elections held in June 2000 were criticised by international bodies,
including the Commonwealth, and the European Union, for interference and
intimidation by the government. Zimbabwe was suspended from the Commonwealth
following the poll, charging Mr Mugabe of using state power and institutions
to steal the elections from the opposition MDC led by Morgan Tsvangirai.

The Zimbabwean government has proposed electoral reforms for next year's
elections, but the opposition remain sceptical that they would ever come
into practice.

ISRAEL, MAY 1948

The State of Israel was established on 14 May 1948 when the last of the
British troops withdrew from Palestine, which they had taken from the
Ottoman Empire in 1917 and ruled under a League of Nations mandate granted
after the First World War. The Palestinian Arabs refer to the day as
"al-Naqba" or "the Catastrophe".

The British Balfour Declaration had paved the way for the creation of the
first Jewish state for nearly 2,000 years. A United Nations vote sanctioned
the partition of the land between Jews and Arabs. The name Israel was a
last-minute choice.

The establishment of the Israeli state took place against a backdrop of
conflict between Jewish groups involved in struggle against British and Arab
forces. Two Jewish groups, the Irgun Zvai Leumi and Stern Gang, triggered a
mass exodus by hundreds of thousands of Arabs to neighbouring countries with
a massacre in the Arab village od Deir Yassin near Jerusalem. The day after
the declaration of the state of Israel, five Arab armies from Jordan, Egypt,
Lebanon, Syria and Iraq invaded.

Britain has steadily lost its influence over the former mandated territory.
In his justification for the invasion of Iraq, Tony Blair insisted that
military action would pave the way for peace in the Israel-Palestine
conflict. While maintaining friendly relations with Israel, the British
Government has sought to build up links with the Palestinian authorities,
and express concern to Washington. However, the Foreign Office privately
accepts it has little independent influence.

The United States strongly supported the creation of Israel. Britain shares
the US exasperation with Yasser Arafat's rejection of peace terms offered in
2000 and his inability to assert his authority over the multitude of
Palestinian security services and militias.

INDIA, AUGUST 1947

India, the "Jewel in the Crown" of the British Empire, was divided into two
countries, introducing Pakistan, and gained independence in August, 1947,
after 190 years of colonisation.

That began with the victory of Robert Clive, of the East India company, over
the Sultan of Bengal, Shiraz U-Dullah at the Battle of Plessey, and spread
through the decaying Mughal empire from Afghanistan in the West to Burma in
the East.

Defenders of the Empire view the Raj as a success. Although there was a huge
cultural interchange between Britain and India, and British democracy lives
on in India, the handover, and partition of Muslim Pakistan, and the
predominantly Hindu India, took a terrible human cost.

Thousands were killed in rioting as millions migrated, the most prominent
being Mahatma Gandhi, the leader of the non-violent swadeshi struggle for
independence, assassinated by a Hindu for preaching of religious tolerance
and perceived betrayal of Hinduism.

The legacy lives on in three wars between India and Pakistan, and continuing
violent strife over Kashmir. Although there is steady improvement, the last
confrontation between the two states, both with nuclear arsenals, created
international panic.

The terms of independence were set by Lord Mountbatten of Burma working to a
tight timeframe ordered from London. Critics of the last Viceroy of the
Indian Empire accuse him of moving too fast and failing to ensure security
was adequate.

Some Pakistanis said Lord Mountbatten favoured the Indians, led by the
secular Harrow- and Oxford-educated Indian leader Jaharlal Nehru, against
the Muslim League led by Mohammed Ali Jinnah.

IRELAND, DECEMBER 1921

Ireland, conquered, and in parts colonised, by Britain, following a number
of expeditions over several centuries, was granted Home Rule in December
1920. The island was split in two, with the predominantly Protestant north
choosing to remain as part of the United Kingdom.

Ireland had become part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
in 1801, but a majority of Irish MPs elected to the Commons in the post-War
elections in 1918 refused to take their seats. Instead they set up a rival
parliament in Dublin in January 1919, and declared independence.

A fiercely fought war ended with the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921, which
created the Irish Free State, with dominion status and the Queen remaining
the titular head. The name was later changed to Eire.

In 1949 the Irish Republic was declared. Irish citizens in the rest of the
United Kingdom, however, continue to enjoy rights of citizenship, including
the right to serve in the forces and stand for electoral office.

In Northern Ireland Catholics complained of widespread discrimination and
disenfranchisement. The violent suppression of civil rights marches in 1968
led to the rebirth of the IRA, with the Provisional wing gaining control
over the Marxist, and more moderate Officials, and the formation of another
Republican group, INLA. The loyalist paramilitaries also organised
themselves.

An urban guerrilla war, between British forces and the Republicans, with the
loyalists at times secretly working with the British, ended with the Good
Friday agreement in 1998, approved by a referendum in both Eire and Northern
Ireland. Following the agreement, a bomb explosion in Omagh resulted in the
highest number of casualties in the current round of troubles.

USA, SEPTEMBER 1783

The American War of Independence officially ended with the Treaty of Paris
on September 3, 1783. The constitution of the United States of America came
into effect in 1788.

In 1812 disputes over A Royal navy blockade during the Napoleonic Wars led
to another war between Britain and the new country during which British
forces burned down the White House.

The first permanent European settlement in North America had been in St
Augustine, Florida, in 1565. English settlers first arrived in Jamestown,
Virginia, in 1607. The war started in 1774 with disputes over taxation of
the colonists the focal point.

The American Continental Army, under George Washington, suffered initial
reverses, but the turning point came with the British defeat at the Battle
of Yorktown. Washington was elected the first president of USA in 1789.

There was some pressure in London, mainly from cotton interests, to
intervene on the southern side during the American civil war. But there were
no further armed conflicts between the two countries. By the time of the
First World War it was Britain seeking help from the former colony.
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HARARE NORTH SECURITY SERVICES
PO Box MP 391, Mt Pleasant

A group of trained and experienced Security Guards offer their services to
residents of Harare northern suburbs.† The current rate per 12-hour night
shift is Z$25 000, monthly contracts available at considerably reduced rate.
Our Security Guards will be able to keep more of the fee than they do with
other companies, which cream off 40% or so!

Please assist our security guards to keep you safe, while improving their
own working conditions.

Telephone 304492 or 304289.

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SABC

Zimbabwe says it still expects bumper harvest

June 29, 2004, 13:12

The authorities in Zimbabwe have once more predicted a bumper harvest for
their country, which international and domestic researchers say will need
food aid again this year.

The state-run Herald newspaper quotes Lancaster Museka, the labour and
social welfare secretary, as saying the government expects 600 000 tonnes of
maize. He says the state is aware of the fact that there will be some
differences in the yield potentials of different districts, but it is
convinced farmers will be able to meet national grain needs.

Museka says areas that are likely to have poor harvests are mostly in the
dry regions of southern and western Zimbabwe, which will require the
authorities to work out ways to move food to needy places. The Robert Mugabe
administration also plans to intensify its monitoring mechanism of grain
movement from one area to another in the country, as well as from the
country to destinations across borders.

Drought relief on the way
Museka says the government has always allocated resources for drought relief
programmes in what are known to be traditionally food-deficit areas each
season. He says the needs of people in the affected districts will be
addressed through internal food movements and engaging beneficiaries in
public works schemes financed through the national drought relief aid
programme.

The official says the national reserves will further be complemented by
supplies imported during dry years, which are still coming in. And the
winter wheat will also add to the food.

Claims of no need for food aid
Museka has repeated claims by his seniors, including Mugabe, saying Zimbabwe
will not need food aid this year, as the country expects to produce extra
grain from farms seized from white owners since 2000.

However, some legislators of both the ruling Zanu(PF) and the opposition
have dismissed the promises of food self-sufficiency as irresponsible talk
aimed to win votes, because more than five million Zimbabweans will need to
be fed this year.
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Ananova

††††† Cane or breast for naughty pupils

A schoolteacher has been suspended in Zimbabwe for allegedly giving pupils
the choice of being caned or suckling her breasts.

The woman faces a disciplinary hearing after one of the pupils reported the
'punishment' to his parents, reports the Herald.

The boy claimed he was asked to choose between suckling the teacher's
breasts or receiving 100 strokes of the cane for being noisy.

The boy chose to suckle the teacher's breasts, as did 14 others, according
to the newspaper.

The headmaster of the Harare school summoned the teacher to respond to the
allegations.

The teacher allegedly admitted forcing the children to suckle her breasts
but could not give reasons why she had done so.

Harare provincial education director Tomax Doba confirmed the incident and
said that his office had been furnished with a report from the school.

"We received a report from the school and the report says it happened. We
have already advised them to make a police report and the teacher is likely
to face child abuse charges," Mr Doba said.
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ZCU's 'acting chairman' hijacks Matabeleland AGM

A special correspondent

June 29, 2004

The annual general meeting of the Matabeleland Cricket Association at the
Queens Sports Club on Saturday ended in chaos when an official of the
Zimbabwe Cricket Union tried to hijack proceedings.

The problems arose when Vumindaba Moyo, who was challenging Ahmet Esat for
the post of Matabeleland chairman, declared that a new black club -
Emakhandeni - whose application for affiliation had only just been received,
should be allowed to vote.

At that point Mukuhlani, the Mashonaland chairman, who was at the meeting as
an observer, stood up to support Esat. "I am here as the acting ZCU
chairman," Mukuhlani is reported to have shouted, banging his fist on the
table. "Whatever I say is binding . when I am talking I demand respect."

Esat is seen locally as weak, as he was a member of the ZCU board which made
the decision to fire the 15 senior players led by Matabeleland's Heath
Streak. The clubs also felt that Esat failed to speak for the province at
ZCU board meetings and was overshadowed by Tavengwa Mukuhlani, Max Ebrahim
and Ozais Bvute (Bvute attended the meeting but kept unusually silent). So
the clubs supported Moyo as they felt he would speak for, and stand up for,
the province.

Mukuhlani had no right to speak at a meeting which he was attending as an
observer. It is also unclear under what authority he was claiming to be
acting chairman of the ZCU. He was accompanied by Givemore Makoni, the
Matabeleland provincial general manager, who also had no right to be
involved in procedings.

But his intervention triggered ugly scenes as Moyo and his supporters began
hurling insults at Esat and Mukuhlani before storming out of the meeting.
"This is not a ZCU meeting, you cannot come here and tell us what to do,"
yelled a clearly angry Moyo.

Eventually, Dennis Streak, who was chairman of the AGM, restored some sort
of order and the elections went ahead, but all the blacks who were nominated
for the posts refused to stand. Esat was re-elected unopposed while Stanley
Staddon was elected as vice-chairman. The results mean that none of the
members of the board are black, and Matabeleland, the second most powerful
province after Mashonaland, has still not had a black chairman.

The result might not stand for too long as Moyo is understood to be
gathering support from the Matabeleland clubs with a view to forcing a
motion of no confidence in the Esat-led board at an Emergency General
Meeting.

© Wisden Cricinfo Ltd
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Mail and Guardian

'African leaders cannot rule like before'

††††† Addis Ababa

††††† 29 June 2004 10:46

The commissioner of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African
Union (AU) has spelt out four major obstacles to ending conflict on the
continent.

Addressing leaders of civil society organisations from all across Africa
meeting at AU headquarters in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, on Sunday,
Said Djinnit said limited resources, lack of support for peacekeeping
operations and poor conflict early warning systems all served to hamper
efforts to resolve the conflicts ravaging Africa. He also highlighted the
enormous difficulties facing post-conflict reconstruction, which, he said,
would constitute a "huge challenge" for at least the next 20 years in
Africa.

Conflicts have crippled Africa. The AU estimates that since the 1960s,
Africa has witnessed some 30 conflicts, claiming seven million lives and
costing about $250-billion.

By 2010, the AU hopes to have its own standby rapid reaction force of 15 000
men, comprising five regional brigades, to quell such conflicts. An early
warning system will signal potential crises, while a "panel of the wise" --
five independent men and women -- will advise the 15-strong PSC.

But without support from both within and outside Africa, Djinnit added, the
newly established PSC would not be able to function properly. "If you don't
put the resources and the expertise in the right place, the institutions
will not function. They will only function if you invest," he said.

The EU is one of the most substantial investors in the PSC, having
contributed ?250-million (about $302,5-million) to the AU's peacekeeping
fund. But the AU estimates that its peace fund will require $200-million a
year. In 2003, the AU had just over $6-million in its peace fund, compared
with the $2,3-billion dollars the UN spent on peacekeeping in Africa.

"Peace is so important, so vital for our people and so difficult to achieve
that it needs the involvement of all," Djinnit noted.

The AU has established the economic, social and cultural council to act as
an "interface" to enable allow greater civil society involvement in the EU.
The civil society leaders meeting in Addis Ababa on Sunday are vying to
establish a greater role within the AU.

Tajudeen Abdul-Raheem, the general-secretary of the Pan-African Movement in
Uganda, said that the present role of civil society marked a sea change in
African politics. "African leaders cannot rule like before, and African
people will not let them rule like before, so you have that confluence for
change," he said.

"There is no longer hero-worshipping of these leaders. People are now
starting to claim their space and recognise that they shape their own
futures."

Abdul Mohammed of the Inter Africa Group said the meeting was "significant"
because it ensured that civil society had a role to play within the AU. "By
no means is Africa doing well, but there is a new sense of purpose, energy,
and a new sense of legitimacy, and that is illustrated by engaging with us."

Djinnit told the civil society leaders that they were playing a vital role,
and that their absence had been one of the weaknesses of the AU's
predecessor, the Organisation of African Unity (OAU).

"For Africa to have houses, water, electricity and health, you must have
peace," he stressed. "So long as peace is not achieved, we cannot achieve
our other goals."

Unlike its predecessor, the OAU -- which was heavily criticised for its
policy of non-interference in the internal affairs of African countries --
the AU, through the PSC, is empowered to exercise such intervention.

In all, about 10 African countries are in the throes of conflict, and there
are currently six different UN peacekeeping missions deployed on the
continent.

"No more, never again. Africa cannot sit in Africa and cannot watch
tragedies developing in the continent and say this is the UN's
responsibility or somebody else's responsibility," Djinnit said. "We have
moved from the concept on non-interference to non-indifference. We cannot
remain as Africans indifferent to the tragedy of our people," he stressed. -
Irin
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Bill Set to Empower Small-Scale Miners

The Herald (Harare)

June 29, 2004
Posted to the web June 29, 2004

Golden Sibanda
Harare

THE Ministry of Mines and Mining Development has stepped up efforts to
finalise the Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill of 2004 in a bid to empower
small-scale miners.

Mines and Mining Development Minister Mr Amos Midzi told The Herald Business
that his ministry had reached an advanced stage in putting final touches to
the contents of the Bill.

"We are currently at the stage where we are finalising on the contents of
the Amendment Bill, and this is being done internally by ministry officials.

"We expect this to be finalised any time soon but certainly within a month
from now and immediately after this process I look forward to holding
audience with various stakeholders affected by these amendments," said Mr
Midzi.

He said such an all-encompassing consultative process would be aimed at
seeking consensus amongst all stakeholders.

The Minister could not be drawn into explaining what has been holding up the
adoption of the Amendment Bill, which has been in the offing for the better
part of this year.

The small miners representative body, the Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF),
has been lobbying the Government to expedite the adoption of the indigenous
miners empowerment bill regardless of any arguments against that motion.

"The piece of legislation is long overdue, since the indigenous miners have
been sidelined from the industry for more than 100 years, from the opening
of early mines in the country by the Pioneer Column in 1890," said a
spokesman for the Zimbabwe Miners Federation.

The mining sector contributes about 30 percent of the country's foreign
exchange earnings and is the second largest foreign currency earner after
agriculture.

If the Amendment Bill is adopted, it is believed that the mining sector
would be able to contribute 50 percent of the nation's foreign exchange
income.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development has dispelled
rumours that the Mining Development Loan Fund was improperly disbursed to
former executive members of the now defunct Zimbabwe Miners Association.

The mines ministry said the allegations were preposterous and were
tantamount to implying that the ministry was insensitive to the need for
transparency and public accountability.

However, the ministry put record straight when it said part of the $5
billion loan fund had been earmarked for the procurement of equipment for
the ministry's workshops and the equipment would be used by small-scale
miners.

The remainder of the funds put aside for the purchase of mining equipment
would be disbursed to deserving recipients, the ministry said.
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Agribank Disburses $17,3bn to Wheat Farmers

The Herald (Harare)

June 29, 2004
Posted to the web June 29, 2004

Harare

THE Agricultural Bank (Agribank) has so far disbursed $17,3 billion to
winter wheat farmers, the bank's chief executive officer, Mr Sam Malaba,
said yesterday.

Mr Malaba told New Ziana that of the $50 billion given to the Land Bank
through the Government's Productive Sector Facility, $17,3 billion had so
far been disbursed to farmers.

He said the money would go towards funding the farmers' working capital
requirements.

"The bank received and committed $50 billion for the winter wheat programme
of which $17,3 billion has already been disbursed to farmers for the winter
wheat working capital requirements," said Mr Malaba.

He said that they received various other requests for the purchase of
capital items such as irrigation equipment and tillage units.

The bank could, however, not meet the requests for irrigation equipment and
tillage units as these could be procured through other institutions.

"Irrigation infrastracture rehabilitation is the responsibility of Arda and
Arex's department of Agricultural Engineering," he said.

He said a total 1 024 farmers had benefited from the programme, with 80
percent being A1 and A2 farmers.

"Very few people who did not have adequate water resources or had inadequate
irrigation infrastracture failed to access the loans, but the bulk of the
people who approached the bank for working capital purposes got assisted,"
said Mr Malaba.

He said the Land Bank was in the process of preparing for the summer
cropping season and was awaiting the last $50 billion disbursement from
Government.

"The bank is also making presentations for release of additional funding to
meet the balance of the summer season requirements for the next season," he
said.

Agribank was last year transformed from a commercial bank into a land bank
responsible for funding agricultural activities and new challenges presented
by the land reform exercise that began in 2000. - New Ziana.
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