The ZIMBABWE Situation
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Zim tops asylum seekers chart




17/06/2010 00:00:00

by Staff Reporter

Leading the world ... Zim had most asylum seekers in 2009


THE United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says Zimbabweans topped the list of asylum seekers in 2009 with claims from the country more than double those from war-torn nations such as Afghanistan and Somalia.

A report released by the UN agency on Tuesday said 158 000 Zimbabweans filed asylum claims last year even as the country started to recover from years of social and political strife with the formation of the coalition government.

In second place was south-east Asian country of Myanmar (48 600) followed by Eritrea (43 300), Ethiopia (42 500), Colombia, Afghanistan and Somalia.

The report said 90 percent of the asylum claims by Zimbabweans were lodged in neighbouring South Africa.

There are no official figures of Zimbabwean immigrants living in South Africa although estimates range between two and three million – a significant chunk of the country’s population of about twelve and a half million.

Still more are scattered in other southern African countries such as Botswana while significant numbers moved to the United Kingdom and other Western countries.

Most of the immigrants left the country in the last decade to escape an economic and political crisis which critics blame on President Robert Mugabe’s misrule.

The veteran leader – who has been in power since independence in 1980 – however counters that sanctions imposed by western countries as punishment for his land reforms were responsible for the country’s economic collapse.

Mugabe and long-term rival Morgan Tsvangirai have since formed a coalition government and instituted a series of reforms which have eased political tensions and helped stem the economic decline.

However the Zimbabwe Diaspora has largely ignored calls by the coalition administration to return home and help rebuild the country.

Most have chosen to stay put in their adopted countries.

Others have opted to wait until a substantive government takes office after the next general election, expected to be held next year.

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Mugabe, Tsvangirai barely talking?



16/06/2010 00:00:00

by Sports Reporter

 Tsvangirai and Mugabe not getting along?


DEPUTY Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara says progress in the coalition administration is being held back by the principals’ inability to subordinate their party political interests to the national good.

Mutambara - who leads the MDC-M formation - told supporters at a rally in Makokoba, Bulawayo, at the weekend that the working relationship between President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai was frequently frosty.

“We had a meeting last Tuesday. Mugabe can’t speak to Tsvangirai and vice-versa; I had to intervene and urge them to be mature.

“When the history (of this country) is written correctly people will know what a wonderful job our party did to bring sanity to this GNU (government and national unity),” Mutambara said.

President Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Mutambara established a coalition government following inconclusive general elections in 2008 but the administration continues to be threatened by disputes over full implementation of the political deal which facilitated its formation.

Tsvangirai’s MDC-T party wants “outstanding issues” in the implementation of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) addressed.

On the other hand Zanu PF counters that it has fully met its end of the political bargain and accuses its partners of not doing enough to have western sanctions imposed on the country lifted.

However Mutambara urged his coalition partners not to be consumed by narrow and selfish party political interests and instead train their focus on rebuilding the country.

He said bickering over the so-called outstanding issues should not overshadow the achievements of the coalition government citing the economic stabilization as well as the establishment of media, electoral and human rights commissions.

The MDC-M leader said progress has also been made in the constitutional reform process adding that his party would push for devolution of power and proportional representation to ensure that “every vote counts and that the interests of the minorities are also represented”.

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Inflation surges to 6.1 percent



16/06/2010 00:00:00

by Staff Reporter

Inflation concern ... Central Harare

THE Central Statistical Office (CSO) says inflation surged to 6.1 percent year-on-year in May compared with 4.8 percent in April due to rising food prices and transport costs.

The CSO data, released on Tuesday showed that on a monthly basis, inflation had quickened to 0.3 percent from 0.1 percent in April.

The figures came a day after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) urged public and private sector workers to exercise wage restraint to avoid pushing the country back into an inflation spiral.

The Ministry of Finance also warned that the gains recorded in the fight against inflation in 2009 were increasingly coming under threat.

“The disinflationary gains of 2009 are now under threat as inflationary pressures started building up during the first quarter of 2010.

“This was largely driven by rising prices for food, non alcoholic beverages, health education and services for public utilities,” the ministry said in its 2010 first quarter treasury bulletin.

The bulletin also attributed the resurgent inflationary pressures to the strengthening of the South African Rand against the US dollar which adversely affects Zimbabwe since the bulk of the country’s imports come from its southern neighbour.

Capacity utilisation in local industries remains constrained forcing the country to rely on imports from South Africa even for basic goods.

The annual inflation figure was firmly in negative territory at - 4.8 percent as recently as January and analysts say the rise in May increases the risk that inflation will be back in double figures by the end of the year.

"We are likely to see inflation rising to double digits for the first time since we started using foreign currencies (in February 2009) and this is because of food price pressures and the heavy reliance on imports," economic commentator John Robertson told Reuters.

Zimbabwe, whose inflation peaked at 500-billion percent in late 2008, has stabilised its economy under the coalition government set up last year by bitter rivals President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

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Coltart launches cricket charm offensive



17/06/2010 00:00:00

by Sports Reporter

Time to move on ... David Coltart

ZIMBABWE sports minister David Coltart has been in Australia this week meeting government representatives with the hope of resuming cricket ties between the two countries.

This follows a meeting with Cricket Australia (CA) officials earlier in the week, including chairman Jack Clarke and chief executive James Sutherland, where Coltart argued Zimbabwe's case for the resumption of cricket ties.

"Senator Coltart briefed the chairman and chief executive on his view that cricket is starting to be restored in Zimbabwe," a CA spokesman said.

"His view is that it would be helpful if world cricket was able to engage with Zimbabwe cricket to help with the further restoration of the game in that country."

Coltart requested that Australia resume cricket contact with Zimbabwe at under-19 and Australia A level, a proposal that CA will consider.

However, a sticky issue during Coltart's trip was the ICC candidacy of former Australian prime minister John Howard which is being opposed by Zimbabwe Cricket.

"In terms of Zimbabwe's laws I do not have the power to give direction to Zimbabwe cricket. So I'm simply playing a role of mediator and facilitator, because Peter Chingoka and Ozias Bvute can't at the present time travel to Australia.

"I will meet the Zimbabwe cricket board when I get back next week and convey to them what's been discussed, and I hope that sense will prevail," Coltart said

Coltart travelled to New Zealand prior to Australia and the Black Cats have already said they would work towards touring Zimbabwe next year.

New Zealand called-off a scheduled tour of the country this year, citing “security concerns”.

However Zimbabwe recently hosted without incident a tri-nations One Day International series involving India and Sri Lanka where the hosts made it to the finals with some encouraging performances.

Meanwhile from Australia Coltart will next meet with English officials as he fights for support to strengthen the tentative progress made under the joint government of Zanu-PF and the MDC (Movement For Democratic Change).

"The problem is there is still a lot of general scepticism regarding this provisional arrangement," he said. "There still is concern about the slow pace of reform, ongoing human rights violations and related to that the concern that if for example there is re-engagement at this stage, that that may buttress Zanu-PF.

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Constitutional reforms, Mugabe opponents’ only hope

by Tafadzwa Mutasa

Thursday 17 June 2010

HARARE—Zimbabwe’s ageing President Robert Mugabe has managed to stifle power-sharing agreements reached with his arch rival, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, to remain firmly in control of the levers of power, analysts said, leaving the constitutional writing process the only chance for opponents to try to wrestle power from him.


A key exercise to consult the public on what they want included in a new constitution was launched in Harare yesterday.  


Mugabe, now 86, has skillfully and brazenly clung on to power since Zimbabwe’s independence from Britain in 1980 but was forced into a coalition deal in September 2008 after his ZANU PF party failed to win earlier elections.


Political commentators said Mugabe, who was under pressure to equally share power with Tsvangirai when he was forced to sign the global political agreement (GPA) on September 15, 2008, had clawed back lost ground and his party now looked to be in total control with the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) on the back foot.


Mugabe’s strategy has been to drag out the unity government, buying time to rebuild his faction-riddled ZANU PF and his unilateral actions have left the unity government in limbo while his opponents have at best been able to only give muffled responses.


“From the beginning Mugabe did not want this thing to work, he wanted to buy time and as you can see now he is back to his default mode,” John Makumbe, a political analyst with the University of Zimbabwe and critic of Mugabe’s policies said.


“Clearly what we are seeing is a situation where nothing else will move in as far as the outstanding issues are concerned. It is back to (South African President Jacob) Zuma to tell Mugabe in no uncertain terms that he has to abide by the terms of the GPA,” said Makumbe. “There is no guarantee that South Africa will break the deadlock though so the MDC has to take the game to Mugabe to force any concessions from him.”


But South Africa, which is one of the guarantors of Zimbabwe’s power-sharing agreement and currently preoccupied  with hosting the soccer World Cup until next month, seems to be in no hurry to end the political deadlock afflicting its northern neighbour.


Zuma will not be send officials to Harare anytime soon to help revive talks to end a political deadlock threatening the unity government, his international relations adviser Lindiwe Zulu said this week.


But it is not only Zuma who seems too busy to attend to his northern neighbour’s political stalemate. Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, who are under pressure from their constituencies to take Mugabe head-on over the many outstanding issues, also seem deeply consumed by the demands of government bureaucracy. 


“We seem to have entered a period of some lethargic political mode as it were,” Eldred Masunungure, a leading political analyst said.


“I don’t see any hurry either from the principals or the facilitator. It could as well be that there is an acknowledgment that the there will not be any major changes to the current political matrix and the MDC maybe looking up to the constitutional outreach programme to gain some political capital,” said Masunungure.


The coalition ran straight into problems almost from day one when police arrested the treasurer of Tsvangirai’s MDC party, Roy Bennett, in February 2009, shortly before he was to be sworn in as deputy minister of agriculture. 


Mugabe has refused to swear in Bennett even after the High Court acquitted him of the treason charges for which he was arrested. The state has appealed against Bennett’s acquittal.


The veteran leader has also stoically refused to fire two top allies that he unilaterally appointed to the posts of attorney general and central bank governor in breach of the GPA that requires him to consult Tsvangirai and Mutambara when making such appointments.


In addition Mugabe has said restructuring of the armed forces was a non starter, signaling his fear to tinker with an armed force that has backed his three-decade rule.


Mugabe, not one to shy away from controversy, last month opened a new front of conflict when he appointed new judges to the country’s High and Supreme Courts without consulting Tsvangirai or Mutambara. 


The 86-year-old Mugabe, who accuses Tsvangirai of campaigning for imposition by Western countries of visa and financial sanctions against him and top officials of his ZANU PF party, says he will not change his stance on the growing list of disputes with the Premier unless the former opposition leader calls for lifting of the punitive measures. 


Tsvangirai denies responsibility for calling for lifting of sanctions and says instead Mugabe should allow democratic reforms in the country to persuade Western governments to scrap sanctions.


“I think the constitution offers the MDC the best hope to try to get some political concessions, but they have to know they are up against a system that is totally opposed to democratisation,” Makumbe said.


The outreach is already running eight months behind and is likely to be a hotly contested affair. Zimbabwe was scheduled to hold a referendum on the new constitution this month, but delays over political squabbling and funding has delayed the process, with analysts saying the referendum will likely take place sometime in 2011.


The credibility of the constitutional reform exercise has already been tainted by reports of alleged intimidation by Zimbabwe army soldiers and ZANU PF supporters who are said to have launched a campaign to force villagers in some parts of the country to support the use of a controversial draft constitution known as the Kariba draft as the foundation of the proposed new governance charter.


The Kariba draft secretly authored in 2007 by  ZANU PF and the two former opposition MDC formations largely leaves Mugabe’s immense powers untouched and would allow the President tow more five-year terms in office. – ZimOnline

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Zim’s squabbling leaders call for peace

by Patricia Mpofu

Thursday 17 June 2010

HARARE – Zimbabwe’s squabbling coalition partners put aside their differences on Wednesday to urge Zimbabweans to shun violence during an exercise to consult the public on the drafting of a new constitution.

“We don’t want violence. Please no quarrelling, no violence and no conflicts when views differ on political grounds,” President Robert Mugabe said as he launched the constitutional outreach exercise in Harare alongside Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Deputy Premier Arthur Mutambara.

The long delayed constitutional outreach exercise will run until October to be followed by a referendum that will allow Zimbabweans to have final say on the draft charter.

The government is expected to call fresh elections once a new constitution is in place although there is no legal requirement for it to do so, while Tsvangirai and Mugabe have differed on when a new vote can be held.

Mugabe has insisted new polls should be held most probably next year whether or not there is a new constitution while Tsvangirai has said elections must be preceded by a new and democratic constitution.

Speaking during the same occasion to launch the outreach exercise, Tsvangirai, who has previously accused hardliner elements within Mugabe’s ZANU PF party of blocking democratic reforms, said those resisting change would fail.

“Those that resist change may attempt to delay the democratic process (but) the will of the people cannot be denied and their voices cannot be silenced,” Tsvangirai said.

“There is no reason for violence, let us never forgive those who would want to disrupt and violate the will of the people,” added the Prime Minister.

Mutambara called on political leaders to create conditions conducive to peaceful dialogue over the new constitution.  “As politicians we have an obligation to allow for peace in this country. We should make sure we the condition in this country allows for proper conversation which will give a people driven constitution.”

The inordinate delays to start the outreach exercise have helped damage the credibility of the constitutional reforms that have also been tainted by reports of alleged violence and intimidation by soldiers and ZANU PF supporters campaigning for the adoption of the controversial Kariba draft constitution as the basis of the proposed new charter.

ZANU PF and the two MDC formations of Tsvangirai and Mutambara secretly authored the Kariba draft in 2007 but critics say the document should be discarded because it leaves untouched the immense presidential powers that analysts say Mugabe has used to stifle opposition to his rule for the past three decades.

Zimbabweans hope a new constitution will guarantee human rights, strengthen the role of Parliament and curtail the president's powers, as well as guaranteeing civil, political and media freedoms. -- ZimOnline

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Anger grows over Kimberley Process failings in Zimbabwe

SW Radio Africa news stories for 17 June 2010

By Alex Bell
17 June 2010

Thousands of people from across the world have voiced their anger and frustration with the failure of the international diamond trade monitor, the Kimberley Process, to take action to stop the diamond crisis in Zimbabwe.

Blogs and social network sites have been abuzz with anger in recent weeks, as news has spread that the Kimberley Process is likely to certify Zimbabwe’s Chiadzwa diamonds. This is despite evidence of mass murders, forced labour, political oppression, and human rights abuses associated with the mines. In reaction thousands of people have signed an online petition calling for a complete reform of the Kimberly Process. The petition, started by ethical jewelry group Brilliant Earth, calls on the Kimberley Process to broaden its mandate to sufficiently address human rights abuses in the diamond trade. “Most importantly, it should incorporate worker exploitation, violence, child labor, and environmental destruction,” the petition reads.

“Consumers are outraged that the Kimberley Process is not protecting the basic human rights or dignity of diamond miners. They find the ‘conflict-free’ certification to be misleading, and are appalled that nothing is being done to change the situation in Zimbabwe,” said Beth Gerstein, the founder of Brilliant Earth. The Kimberley Process has so far refused to take action on Zimbabwe, hiding behind the weak excuse that there is no conflict in the country, therefore the diamonds from Chiadzwa are not ‘conflict stones’. Last year, the Kimberley Process ignored demands for Zimbabwe to be suspended from international trade over the rights abuses at Chiadzwa. Instead, the country was given time to brings its trade and human rights standards in line with international expectations. But almost one year later there is no evidence to suggest that this has happened. On the contrary, diamond rights groups like the Centre for Research and Development (CRD) have exposed ongoing abuse at the diamond fields. The evidence provided by the CRD has led to the group being shut down and hounded into hiding, with their Director Farai Maguwu still behind bars. Despite this the Kimberley Process monitor, Abbey Chikane, has still recommended that certification be given to Chiadzwa’s stones, a recommendation set to top the agenda at next week’s Kimberley Process meeting in Israel. Chikane himself has been fingered as the instigator of Maguwu’s arrest, which took place shortly after the pair had a confidential meeting about the abuses in Chiadzwa. Maguwu has since accused Chikane of ‘shopping’ him to the police.

“Zimbabwe will be the final nail in the coffin for the Kimberley Process if they don’t take action next week,” said Brilliant Earth’s Gerstein. “We’ll be back where we were seven years ago, when the world associated diamonds with war and oppression.”

The Kimberley Process is being urged to immediately suspend Zimbabwe from trade until there is proof that the Chiadzwa diamonds are not bankrolling oppression and abuse. Global Witness, a rights group that has been protesting the abuses in Chiadzwa, said this week that ZANU PF’s political and military elite are seeking to capture the country’s diamond wealth “through a combination of state-sponsored violence and the legally questionable introduction of opaque joint-venture companies.” This was revealed in a new report released Monday, titled: Return of the Blood Diamond.

“Over the past three years, the national army has visited appalling abuses on civilians in the diamond fields. Nobody has been held to account for these crimes, and now it turns out that the joint venture companies nominally brought in to improve conditions are directly linked to the ZANU PF and military elite. Thanks to the impunity and violence in Zimbabwe, blood diamonds are back on the international market,” said Elly Harrowell, Global Witness campaigner.

The Global Witness report describes how Minister of Mines, Obert Mpofu, has been one of those at the forefront of the corruption at the diamond fields, by assigning his allies as board members in the state-authorised mining firms currently permitted to mine at Chiadzwa. The two firms, Mbada and Canadile, are joint venture firms with the government’s Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC). Both have been implicated in the ongoing smuggling of gems out of Chiadzwa, a rampant problem said to be losing the country many millions of dollars in potential revenue.

“Mpofu and his cronies seem intent on pursuing their violent, self-serving exploitation of the country’s diamond wealth. Nobody should be under the illusion that this is about anything other than lining the pockets of ZANU PF and their allies, who are being squeezed by economic sanctions,” said Harrowell. ……………….

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Jailed diamond researcher faces another weekend behind bars

SW Radio Africa news stories for 17 June 2010

By Alex Bell
17 June 2010

Jailed diamond researcher Farai Maguwu is facing yet another weekend behind bars, after judgment on his bail hearing was reserved until next week.

Maguwu, the director of the Centre for Research and Development, has been behind bars for two weeks after his arrest on the 3rd June. He was denied bail last week and was subsequently ‘abducted’ by the police from remand prison and taken to the notorious Matapi police cells for interrogation.

During the course of the weekend the police refused to return the activist to remand prison in Harare and held him at Matapi, where he could not be visited by his family or his legal team. He was finally returned to Harare Central Police Station and his lawyers managed to secure an urgent bail application in the High Court this week.

The Attorney General’s office had tried to postpone the bail hearing until Friday, saying they needed more time to research the case. But the hearing was eventually heard on Thursday, although judgement was reserved until next week.

Maguwu was arrested shortly after he held a confidential meeting with the Kimberley Process monitor, Abbey Chikane, about the ongoing crisis at the Chiadzwa diamond fields. Chikane was appointed as part of a set of guidelines to bring Zimbabwe back in line with diamond international trade standards and has since recommended that the Chiadzwa stones receive certification, despite evidence that rights abuses and rampant smuggling are continuing. Maguwu has since accused Chikane of ‘shopping’ him to the police.

Maguwu is currently under police guard in hospital where he is finally receiving treatment for a serious throat infection that developed soon after his arrest. He had been denied medical treatment since his arrest despite his worsening condition. ……………….

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Hope & skepticism greet launch of constitutional outreach

SW Radio Africa news stories for 17 June 2010

By Lance Guma
17 June 2010

The official launch on Wednesday of an exercise to canvas public opinion on a new constitution has been greeted with a mixture of both hope and skepticism. The three party leaders in the coalition government put in an appearance at the Rainbow Towers conference centre in Harare to launch the exercise. They were also united in condemning violence ahead of the programme.

While many people are investing hope in the exercise to deliver an environment conducive to the holding of free and fair elections a sizeable number are expressing concern at attempts by ZANU PF to engineer a draft constitution that keeps Mugabe’s excessive powers intact as President.

Mugabe spoke out rather ‘tongue in cheek’ against the use of violence as his militant thugs in the rural areas have already done their job, warning villagers months in advance against sharing their views during the public meetings. Even the reported deployment of 5 police officers for every outreach team has been described as an insufficient safeguard.

One activist told us; ‘These police officers will only ensure that the legislators and other staff who are conducting the exercise are safe but what about the villagers who have to stay in their communities long after the outreach is over, who will protect them when these police officers leave?’

The Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN), the country’s largest independent election monitor, said; ‘Many villagers have been warned against speaking in the outreach process. Some individuals have been nominated and told what to say. This pattern has been observed in areas which experienced violence in 2008.’

The MDC-T used their weekly Changing Times newsletter to expose the setting up of militia bases by ZANU PF militants in Maramba Pfungwe. The party says five schools have been converted into bases ahead of the constitutional outreach exercise. ‘Each school has either ZANU PF youth officers who are on the payroll of the Public Service Commission, self styled war veterans or ZANU PF councillors. The youths are trained with wooden guns on how to handle military weapons,’ the party said.

But several MDC-T MP’s interviewed vowed to continue with the exercise and urged people to turn out in large numbers to air their views. One MP told us; ‘The journey to a free Zimbabwe is a long and torturous one with many political potholes here and there. The important thing is no matter how long it takes we will eventually arrive at the preferred destination. Nothing lasts forever’.

On Thursday Constitutional Parliamentary Committee co-chairperson Douglas Mwonzora told us they had referred the issue of violence to the three party leaders and that an all-party committee was now meant to deal with it and put mechanism in place. He however urged people not to give in to intimidation. Meanwhile Mwonzora said everything is set for the outreach with the Central Mechanical and Engineering Department (CMED) providing the vehicles to use and the recording equipment they needed was now in the country. He said accreditation for those taking part will be held on Monday the 21st June, induction Tuesday the 22nd while the actual outreach will begin Wednesday the 23rd of June. ……………….

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Muzarabani villagers initiate national healing process

SW Radio Africa news stories for 17 June 2010

By Tichaona Sibanda
17 June 2010

Villagers from the politically volatile district of Muzarabani in Mashonaland Central province have taken the initiate to try to restore justice and healing in the area. They have begun by holding memorial services for some of the victims of the bloody 2008 election violence.

Aided by Heal Zimbabwe Trust, an NGO that works with traumatised victims of violence, the villagers were able to finally remember their loved ones last week, in memorials held in several parts of the district. Before this the villagers had felt too intimidated to honour their dead, due to the ongoing violence in the district.

Rashid Mahiya, a director with Heal Zimbabwe Trust, said the memorial services were attended by the broader community of family members, traditional leaders, church members, victims and perpetrators of the 2008 political violence.

‘Basically the main objective of our Trust is to create an environment in local communities that is conducive for people to live together peacefully and to dialogue,’ Mahiya said.

He said HZT worked with seven communities and families in Muzarabani North and South, in organising memorial services for Toas Gatsi, Master Kachuwaire, Tendai Chizengeya, Zondai Chipendeko, Givemore Kanodeweta, Charles Mutendebvure and Fana Dlamini. All the victims died at the height of the political massacres of June 2008.

The HZT director told us on Thursday that the extent and nature of the violence was such that families and relatives were not given the opportunity to decently bury the deceased.

He said the deceased had been given indecent and improper burials, contrary to traditional and religious beliefs. The communities also did attend the funerals, as is the custom.

A survey done by HZT discovered that violence in Muzarabani was systematic and selective in nature. Ninety percent of the victims of the political violence were males, the main bread winners in their respective families.

During the healing process last week, villagers, families and perpetrators of the violence heard the harrowing stories of the brutality with which victims were hacked to death with machetes or beaten into submission with knobkerries.

‘The major challenge villagers face in Muzarabani is that communities still live in constant mistrust, fear and uncertainty. The victims of torture and violence fear continued victimization and ponder ways and means of reducing their vulnerability. This is where government should come in and make its presence felt, through their national healing organ,’ Mahiya said.

But he added that the National Healing, Reconciliation and Integration organ had done nothing and does not exist in the people’s eyes.

‘People need help. They neeed guidance because victims and perpetrators of violence, uncertain about their future are living in total disillusionment. For us, the starting point was to incorporate both victims and perpetrators to reduce tension between the two as a way of averting the resurgence of violence in future elections and political processes,’ Mahiya added.

But many victims still want the perpetrators to be brought before the courts of law, and for justice to take its course.

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The Heart of the Matter & Callback

SW Radio Africa news stories for 17 June 2010

Violet says the government is failing to provide for the disabled and the sight impaired, so those affected are flocking to South Africa to live as beggars; and, in keeping with the June 16th Day of the African Child theme, former student activist Clever Bere shares his thoughts on some of the issues and concerns of the youth. ……………….

The Heart of the Matter
Tanonoka writes; “I am intrigued that South Africa, under black rule, continues to tacitly support the subjugation of people outside its own borders. South Africa must stop supporting the abuse of African people by their leaders. If South Africa had wanted, the problem in Zimbabwe could have been solved a long time ago and South Africa must learn to be impartial, if unwilling to stand on the side of the suffering.” ……………….

SA mediator Lindiwe Zulu on Behind the Headlines
17 June 2010
Lance speaks to the International Relations Advisor to South African President Jacob Zuma - Lindiwe Zulu. She is part of the facilitation team appointed to mediate in the endless power sharing dispute in Zimbabwe. Lance asks her if the perceived bias of the ANC towards ZANU PF is undermining the mediation and whether they can ever resolve the issue, raised by ZANU PF, of western targeted sanctions, when the other parties in the coalition have no power to remove them.

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