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Zim needs money to vote on constitution

Sapa-AFP | 30 September, 2011 13:08

Zimbabwe will have to raise US$ 88 million dollars (65 million euros) to
hold a vote on a new constitution which has yet to be drafted ahead of fresh
polls, state media reported Friday.

"The referendum needs money as an enabling resource and we are talking of
over US$88 million for the whole process," Joyce Kazembe, the Zimbabwe
Electoral Commission (ZEC) acting chair was quoted as saying by The Herald

"As much as we welcome support from various stakeholders, the funding of an
election or referendum is the responsibility of the State. We cannot let
anyone fund any electoral process because we would be undermining our own

The composition of ZEC is one of the sticking points in the shaky coalition
government of President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai
set up two years ago.

Tsvangirai has complained that the electoral body is heavily staffed by
state security operatives who support Mugabe's ZANU PF party and wants new
officials elected.

The referendum is a precursor to fresh elections after a bloody presidential
run-off election in June 2008 which forced the formation of the unity

Dates for the referendum and general elections are yet to be set.

The constitution committee had originally set June 30 as the date of the
referendum on the draft constitution, before it was moved to September but
the constitution is still yet to be drafted.

The public consultation process was repeatedly disrupted by violent attacks,
including one in which a Tsvangirai supporter was killed when militant
Mugabe backers attacked members of the public attending a meeting.

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US Embassy slams Zimbabwe police over violence; group reports cases of assault, intimidation

By Associated Press, Published: September 30

HARARE, Zimbabwe — The U.S. Embassy in Zimbabwe on Friday criticized police
and judicial officials for failing to stop escalating political violence, as
a human rights group said it had documented more than 20 cases a day of
assault, intimidation and torture.

In a statement, the embassy said that militants backing longtime President
Robert Mugabe’s ZANU-PF party had created a climate of fear and
intimidation, particularly in the western Harare township of Mbare. The
militants there are “unrestrained” by police and are extorting local
traders, it said.

“If left unchallenged, actions such as these lend credence to public
perceptions of ZANU-PF as a party committed to violence and intimidation
unconstrained by the laws of the land,” the U.S. Embassy said.

The independent humans right group Zimbabwe Peace Project, meanwhile, said
85 percent of the violence it had documented in August was perpetrated by
Mugabe supporters. The group’s researchers detailed assaults, intimidation
and torture, as well as politically motivated theft and looting.

About 10 percent of 702 violations in the period under review were blamed on
activists of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s party. Tsvangirai, a
longtime opposition leader, joined into a power-sharing agreement with
Mugabe in 2009 that continues to fray.

Mugabe has called for elections in March to end the coalition formed after
disputed, violence-plagued elections in 2008.

Tensions also have been rising within the ZANU-PF party itself following the
death of party powerbroker Gen. Solomon Mujuru, the Zimbabwe Peace Peace
Project bulletin said. Mujuru died in a a fire at his home almost two months
ago, renewing rivalries over who will succeed the 87-year-old Mugabe.

Police have refused to release details of investigations into the fire that
burnt Mujuru beyond recognition. His burial at a national shrine outside
Harare was by far the biggest funeral since independence in 1980, attended
by some 50,000 mourners.

Many Zimbabweans believe the fire was intentional, and it’s feared political
unrest could erupt if it emerges the popular former guerrilla leader was

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Zimbabwe rights group reports 20 violations a day

Updated 6h 47m ago

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) – An independent human rights research group says
political tension remains "very high" in Zimbabwe ahead of proposed
elections and it reports more than 20 rights violations each day over a four
week period.

In its latest bulletin, the Zimbabwe Peace Project says supporters of
President Robert Mugabe's party are accused of leading political violence
and intolerance toward perceived opponents, some within their own ranks.

It says tension is heightened by WikiLeaks cables claiming deep divisions
and internal backstabbing in the nation's 30-month-old coalition.

The U.S. embassy in Harare, in a statement, also criticizes police and
judicial officials for bias and failing to stop continuing violence.

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70 Elephants Under Threat On The Chiredzi River Conservancy, Zimbabwe

MEDIA RELEASE                                                   


30 September 2011


Elephant crisis situation in Zimbabwe escalates

Urgent intervention needed as authorities threaten to shoot them

Escalating land invasions in Zimbabwe are taking their toll on the country’s already decimated wildlife and a herd of 70 elephants on the Chiredzi River Conservancy (CRC) in the south eastern lowveld, close to Gona re Zhou National Park, is under serious threat.

The nucleus of this remarkable herd originated from Gona re Zhou, (place of the elephant) National Park’s conservation programme initiated in 1991/2 when there was an exceptionally severe drought in the lowveld and their elephants were dying. The translocation was sponsored by US Fisheries and Wildlife.

The CRC purchased juveniles and, as they were in a very poor condition, they were kept in bomas.  Once stabilized and settled, they were released into the conservancy where they grew up and bred under ideal conditions.  Among the current herd are numerous vulnerable youngsters.

As a result of their strong bond with the owners of CRC, the elephants are familiar with people and are quite placid. However, the onslaught of the invaders, who are destroying their territory and forcing them into ever smaller areas of the conservancy, is putting them under severe stress.

One of the problems is the invasion of their water sources. An adult elephant requires more than 190 litres of drinking water on a daily basis, and even higher quantities during the intense heat of the lowveld in mid-summer. Water is also very important for hygiene and wallowing, a time when the adults and youngsters play together.

The tranquil pools below the conservancy’s dams have been polluted by the invaders who wash their clothes in the water and drive their livestock down to drink, causing the mud to be churned up.  The pools now reek with a bad odour and the water has become undrinkable for the elephants.

Wherever they go, the elephants are being harassed by the invaders. When they walk along the Mungwezi River to the two dams to the north, containing drinkable water, they are chased by a hostile group with dogs and burning logs, and their cries of distress echo across the reserve.  They usually have to turn back as they are prevented from going to the dams to drink and are afraid of the threatening mob.

During this month (September), desperation for water resulted in the herd straying out of their normal territory, along the Mungwezi River, south of where they feel safe, into a resettled part of the conservancy, the Mugwezi Ranch area, where the bulls destroyed teachers’ houses. 

Their unusual behaviour is attributed to the human disturbance and encroachment into their safe areas, where their natural habitat is being destroyed by the new invasions. 

Consequently, the Mugwezi residents have expressed concern about their personal safety. Threats have been made to shoot the elephants or even poison them if the situation is not controlled.

Barry Style, vice chairman of the Chiredzi River Conservancy, has explained that it would be a fruitless exercise to shoot an elephant unless that individual was caught in the act of damaging property.  While it is probable that bull elephants are causing the problems he said, it would not be possible to identify the particular culprits from a herd of more than 60 animals. 

He cited a similar incident where the Eaglemont community requested the shooting of elephants earlier in the year, a request that was denied by Environment Minister Francis Nhema, who acknowledges their important role in tourism and the environment.

“I do not believe that by shooting one or two elephants, that the problem will be solved,” said Style.  “On the contrary, this would likely cause the animals more alarm, confusion and aggression, thus posing an even greater threat to human life.”

Style advised that the most practical solution would be for the authorities to try to discourage further human disturbance in the elephants’ residential territory in the Wasara, Oscro and Rukatya, area there they have taken refuge. 


“I am confident that, if they are given a large enough area in which to seek solitude, food and water, the elephants will refrain from wandering into villages and plundering homes and property.”


Style said he had appealed to the district administrator to reconsider the proposed resettlement of Oscro as this would have a detrimental effect on the remaining wildlife population in the conservancy and would naturally fuel the elephants’ aggressive and destructive behaviour towards people.


There is great concern because experience has shown that, once conservancies are taken over by people with no experience of – or interest in the wildlife industry, poaching increases rapidly. Furthermore, subsistence farming is not viable on land that is unsuitable for agriculture and is located in low rainfall, drought prone areas.


The damage currently being caused to the Chiredzi River Conservancy, and other conservation areas, is escalating out of control.  The rapid clearing of areas is causing immediate degradation of the environment and, with the onset of the rains, severe sheet erosion which destroys the irreplaceable topsoil.


During the deforestation process, trees that have taken decades to grow, including hardwoods which may be more than a hundred years old, are chopped down and burnt where they fall. The Mopani forests are being cut for firewood, to be sold to the urban areas. There is no thought or planning for the ecosystem or for the future.

Once the areas are cleared of the scrub and big trees, they get set alight to facilitate the clearing for cropping areas. The fires are set but not controlled and vast areas go up in smoke causing unnecessary damage to the environment and killing anything in their path that cannot escape fast enough.


The dramatic upscaling of poaching is decimating the wildlife.  The invaders hunt with half-starved dogs or trap the game with snares, causing terrible pain and inflicting lingering deaths.  Recent reports of the poisoning of animals and water sources are of mounting concern to conservationists.


Predators within the conservancy boundaries are also poisoned or snared. Due to the reduction of wildlife and natural prey, they often resort to killing domestic livestock to enable them to survive.


Reports have come in today (29 September) of an increase in the invasions and the situation is deteriorating rapidly.  While the pressure on the conservancy owners, their game guards, the wildlife and the environment continues to mount, the authorities are doing nothing to stop the invasions.


The situation for the elephants looks bleak unless there is an immediate response to their plight and to the invasions of the Chiredzi River Conservancy.


What are the long-term solutions?


The issues need to be addressed urgently at ground level.

First of all, the authorities need to move the invaders to suitable agricultural areas where they can make a living from the land and no longer rely on food aid, poaching or cutting down trees to sell for firewood.

Organisations such as Foundations for Farming, a remarkable Zimbabwean success story, could provide conservation agriculture training.  The founder, Brian Oldreive, has already provided thousands of aspiring farmers with expertise, teaching them a revolutionary method of using the land to achieve significant crop yields.

Free courses are conducted across the country teach untrained or uneducated farmers to obtain a potential turnover of at least US$11,000 per season even with the smallest piece of land.

Secondly, the Chiredzi River Conservancy needs funding to employ more patrol staff to monitor the area and protect the animals from poaching.

Thirdly, government needs to pass a law that would protect conservancies under the Tourism Act, and would not allow land to be invaded or claimed.

Charles Taffs, president of the Commercial Farmers’ Union, is calling for urgent action to save the Chiredzi River Conservancy elephant herd and the future of this and other conservancies across Zimbabwe.

Agriculture, tourism and mining were the three pillars of the Zimbabwean economy prior to the land invasions in 2000, but both agriculture and tourism have been decimated,” he said. 


While World Tourism Day was celebrated internationally this week, Zimbabwe has nothing to celebrate.


“In 1999, our country recorded more than 1.4 million visitors,” said Taffs.  Due to the political instability, the numbers had dropped by 75 percent in 2008 to just 223 000.  Today there are virtually no tourists in the conservancies because they are aware of the violence-ridden invasions and the destruction of our once prized game.


“The coalition government cannot allow the lawlessness and destruction of Zimbabwe’s heritage, our future and that of our children to continue.  It is critical that they now take a stand, resolve the escalating crisis and restore the rule of law. 


“The conservancies and Commercial Farmers’ Union will provide support and assist with new initiatives but we cannot do this until the government has intervened,” he concluded.”





Readers can help the Chiredzi River Conservancy elephants by going to the website which is running a competition where the project with the highest number of public votes will win a grant. This would help the conservancy to protect its elephant herd from being poached or poisoned until an urgent solution is found.





Elephants and herd interaction at the Chiredzi River Conservancy:


Elephants at the waterhole as well as poached elephants at the Chiredzi River Conservancy:

For further information:

Charles Taffs


Commercial Farmers’ Union (Zimbabwe)

Tel:    +263 4 309 800

Cell:   +263 772 284 847

E-mail: or




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Second Press Release

MEDIA RELEASE                                                      FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

30 September 2011


Elephants and wildlife under severe threat by invaders at the Chiredzi River Conservancy in Zimbabwe


The Chiredzi River Conservancy, part of the Trans Frontier Conservation Area, is an internationally renowned wildlife conservancy in the south eastern lowveld of Zimbabwe. It is once again being over run by destructive invaders and its elephant and wildlife population is under threat and in severe danger of being wiped out.


The Chiredzi River Conservancy was initiated in 1987 to give wildlife a value and place in Zimbabwean culture and to protect the drought-prone prime woodland areas, notably along the Chiredzi River.

Reports indicate that the destruction of its fragile ecosystem and wildlife has reached such serious proportions that its very survival is under threat. Local environmentalists are appealing for the government to intervene before the destruction of the environment in the conservancy - and in all areas of Zimbabwe - becomes irreversible.


Most conservancies in the country have taken a major battering since the Zanu PF- initiated land invasions began in 2000. These invasions totally disregard the long-term impact of attempting to turn low rainfall woodland areas into subsistence plots for cropping, and grazing areas for their herds of cattle and goats.


The conservancy is situated in an area classified as Region 5, which means it is arid and unsuitable for agriculture. The invaders have destroyed vast areas by burning trees, some species – notably hardwoods – are well over a hundred years old, and are over-grazing the fragile woodlands.  Hundreds of cattle are being brought in illegally and there is no management or guidance from the authorities.


After 11 years of settlement and attempted farming, these invaders are still relying on food aid because the area is too hot and the rainfall too low to enable crops to grow successfully. Although there is funding available to help them move to areas more suitable for farming, their numbers continue to grow and the authorities turn a blind eye.


While game scouts are employed to patrol the conservancy, their jobs are extremely dangerous and they live under constant threat from poachers, politicians and the invaders.  Despite their relatively small numbers, they are the most abused and assaulted of all farm workers in these areas.


The invaders have no respect for their authority to protect the wildlife. Eleven years of no accountability for their illegal activities and the vast damage they have caused, has made them complacent.  Zimbabwe has become a country where the rule of law is no longer supreme.


Today there are only a handful of wildlife ranches remaining, compared to the staggering 640 ranches that existed 10 years ago.

According to Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force statistics, it is estimated that more than 90% of the game on private game ranches has been lost to poachers and illegal hunters during the last 11 years. The loss on conservancies is estimated to be 60% and almost 40% in national parks. Despite these shocking statistics, the slaughter of wildlife continues unabated.


The seventy elephants that reside on the Chiredzi River Conservancy are currently being harassed, chased and snared by the invaders.  Some calves have gone missing, while at least two young adults have been killed, decapitated and their ivory removed - one of them a lactating cow.


In another separate incident, an elephant which had a snare embedded in its flesh, causing great pain, has since died.


In an effort to protect the elephants in the area, Mr Francis Nhema, Minister of Environment and Tourism, was approached for assistance, but when asked if the elephants could be relocated to a safer area, he was adamant that they must stay in the Chiredzi River Conservancy.  According to local residents, while he acknowledged that the invaders were there illegally, no attempt is being made to relocate them or address the issues on the ground.


The wanton destruction of the region includes massive deforestation, notably of prime riverine forest and the near eradication of all species of wildlife. Other problems emerging are the commercial exploitation of timbers, the burning and sale of hardwoods for firewood, constant poaching and loss of game, the poisoning of predators and raptors, and the introduction of diseased settler cattle which results in the spreading anthrax of foot-and-mouth disease.


In January this year, it was discovered that war veterans settled near Humani Estates in the Chiredzi district were using poisoned cabbages at animal drinking points to trap rhinos so that they could cut off the animals’ horns easily once they had died.


This also resulted in the death of cattle and goats, since the animals drank from the same sources or from small dams nearby which had been similarly poisoned.  Scavengers and raptors, which play an important role in the ecosystem, fed on the poisoned carcasses and died.


On September 18, 2011 the media reported that poachers had also begun poisoning waterholes in some of the country’s biggest game parks, including Gonarezhou, located close to the Chiredzi River Conservancy, and Mana Pools, Zambezi, Charara and Matusadona national parks in the north.  This is an extremely concerning development.


The Chiredzi River Conservancy needs more funding to employ patrol guards and put security measures in place to counter act poaching. Since the onset of the land reform programme, destruction of wildlife has been uncontrollable. Invaders have not been able to grow crops due the extremities of the climate and, as a result, exploit the wildlife and the environment.


Once they’ve decimated one area, the invaders move into another and the cycle of destruction continues.  The main concern at present is that, if there is no help from the government or relevant authorities to stop the destruction and move the invaders to suitable farm land, there will be irreversible damage; wildlife species will become extinct and abject poverty and hunger will deepen countrywide.


“It is increasingly critical for the coalition government to pass a law that protects conservancies under the Tourism Act so that conservancy principles are adhered to for the protection of wildlife and the environment,” said the president of the Commercial Farmers’ Union, Charles Taffs.


“Every day streams of people already occupying land illegally in the Chiredzi River Conservancy are heading to new areas with choppers and snares, causing havoc, and this has to stop,” he said. 


The Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force has also stressed the gravity of the situation on their website: “The invaders are waging war with the environment by chopping down the trees, destroying the riverine forests and decimating the game.  Concerned only for their own material gain, they may believe at this point that they are winning, but the loss for the country, and for future generations, will soon be irreversible.”





Readers can help the Chiredzi River Conservancy elephants by going to the website which is running a competition where the project with the highest number of public votes will win a grant. This would help the conservancy to protect its elephant herd from being poached or poisoned until an urgent solution is found.






Elephants and herd interaction at the Chiredzi River Conservancy:


Elephants at the waterhole as well as poached elephants at the Chiredzi River Conservancy:


For further information:                                             


Charles Taffs - President                                                                                           

Commercial Farmers’ Union (Zimbabwe)                 

Tel:    +263 4 309 800   Cell:   +263 772 284 847                                         

E-mail:   or

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Conservancy ‘decimated’ by land invaders

By Alex Bell
30 September 2011

Land invasions at the Chiredzi River Conservancy are escalating out of
control, with warnings that the area faces catastrophe if nothing is done to
stop the destruction.

The Conservancy forms part of the Trans Frontier Conservation Area which is
the world’s largest inter-regional conservation park, encompassing land from
Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe. But in Zimbabwe lawlessness and the
illegal seizure of land means areas like the Chiredzi River Conservancy are
being destroyed.

Hundreds of land invaders have moved into the Conservancy and have caused
serious damage to the delicate ecosystem there. The invaders have been
tearing down trees, destroying the foliage and poaching the animals in the
conservancy, in a surge of destruction that could be irreparable.

Charles Taffs, the President of the Commercial Farmers Union (CFU), told SW
Radio Africa on Friday that they are “hugely concerned,” especially
regarding the “tragedy facing the elephant herd there.” He explained that a
herd of 70 elephants are being harassed, threatened and hunted by the land
invaders, with no intervention from the government.

“The animals’ territory is being completely taken over. Wherever they go
they get chased by people with burning sticks and dogs. They can’t even get
a drink of water because their watering holes have been polluted by people
using the water to wash,” Taffs explained.

Some of the elephants have already been slaughtered, and Taffs warned that
they face being wiped out if no one intervenes. He explained that local
councils have now threatened to kill the animals, because they are leaving
their territory in search of safety, putting them on the path of local

“This is totally out of control and everything is being totally destroyed.
It destroys the area, it destroys tourism, and it destroys whatever
reputation Zimbabwe might have. It is like the land reform programme all
over again in that no one has won, everyone has lost,” Taffs said.

SW Radio Africa has also been told that the rapid clearing of the
conservation areas is causing serious environmental degradation, including
severe erosion, massive deforestation, destructive fires, along with the
rampant poaching. The land invaders are said to be using poison, snares and
dogs to hunt for game, causing extreme suffering to the wildlife.

“The coalition government cannot allow the lawlessness and destruction of
Zimbabwe’s heritage, our future and that of our children to continue. It is
critical that they now take a stand, resolve the escalating crisis and
restore the rule of law,” Taffs said.

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Political changes in SADC delay plans on Zimbabwe

By Tichaona Sibanda
30 September 2011

The recent political changes in the regional SADC bloc have delayed plans to
send a regional team to Zimbabwe, according to the spokesperson for the
South African facilitation team.

Lindiwe Zulu, President Jacob Zuma’s international relations advisor and a
member of the facilitation team to Zimbabwe, said despite the changes, they
were hopeful to do their best to keep things moving.

Originally the team was composed of technocrats appointed by the Presidents
of Mozambique, Zambia and South Africa, which comprised the Troika.

But the composition of the Troika changed during the Angola summit in
August, when Tanzania replaced Mozambique as a member.

Mozambique had already appointed a member for the Zim team but this person
will now be replaced by someone from Tanzania.

Zambia had also appointed an official to join the team, but the change of
government there in the last week has put this appointment in jeopardy.

‘We had a team that was ready to go to Zimbabwe but were delayed by issues
to do with their terms of reference. In the meanwhile, during this period,
Tanzania replaced Mozambique on the Troika and just last week, there was a
change in government in Zambia,’ Zulu said.

She said Zambia were still to confirm if they were going to stick with the
same individual, who was chosen by the former President Rupiah Banda.

‘To be honest, we don’t know what they are going to do. We are just waiting
to hear from them because we want to do the best we can for Zimbabwe. For
now work is still ongoing in JOMIC and we are still continuing with our work
on Zimbabwe,’ Zulu added.

A SADC summit held in Pretoria, South Africa in June recommended that a
three member team be deployed in Zimbabwe to help JOMIC effectively monitor
the implementation of the Global Political Agreement (GPA).

This followed concerns that JOMIC was failing to deal with violations of the
GPA, mainly by ZANU PF activists who continue to engage in politically
motivated violence.

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Zimbabwe Media Liberalization Advocates Grow Impatient on Radio Licenses

29 September 2011

Broadcasting Authority officials in July told Parliament's committee on
media that the agency lacked the capacity or funding to monitor new
commercial stations as the law requires, raising doubts about new licenses

Tatenda Gumbo | Washington

Zimbabweans hoping to see the launch of independent radio stations are
becoming impatient at how long it is taking the Broadcasting Authority of
Zimbabwe to follow through on its pledge four months ago to issue two
commercial radio licenses.

Media reform advocates now say they now believe that promise was simply
intended to fend off pressure for progress liberalizing the country’s
electronic media. The Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corp. continues to exercise a
domestic broadcast monopoly. Skeptics say they don't expect new licenses to
be issued before elections coming up in 2012.

Broadcasting Authority officials in July told Parliament's committee on
media that the agency lacked the capacity or funding to monitor new
commercial stations as the law requires, raising questions as to the
eventual licensing of new players.

BAZ Chairman Tafataona Mahoso and Chief Executive Officer Obert Maganyura at
the time said they will face challenges once new players launch radio
stations. They said it would take US$3 million to properly monitor
independent broadcasters.

A report by the committee said the Broadcasting Authority has refused five
applications for independent radio licenses in the past decade. The report
said licensing criteria in the Broadcasting Services Act have been strongly
criticized by media activists, and concluded that the application process
was intended to maintain the status quo.

Broadcasting Authority officials could not be reached immediately for

For perspective on the long delay in issuing licenses, VOA's Tatenda Gumbo
spoke with lawmakers Pishai Muchauraya of the Tsvangirai formation of the
Movement for Democratic Change, and Noel Mandebvu of the ZANU-PF party of
President Robert Mugabe, both members of the parliamentary committee on

Mandebvu blamed the delays in issuing licenses on funding issues - but
Muchauraya charged that the political to liberalize the broadcast sector is

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Rowan Williams is 'lobbying for homosexuality', claims Mugabe-backed bishop

A renegade bishop backed by Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has dismissed
next week's visit by Archbishop Rowan Williams to the country as an
opportunity to "lobby for homosexuality and neo-colonialism".

By Peta Thornycroft in Johannesburg

4:33PM BST 30 Sep 2011

Nolbert Kunonga, the former Bishop of Harare, this week derided Dr Williams
as "a British civil servant appointed by the Queen and the prime minister, a
civil servant on a mission".

"He is coming to represent neo-colonialism," he said. "He is coming to lobby
for homosexuality and for him it is a timely move as we are making our

Reverend Admire Chisango, the secretary for Mr Kunonga's "diocese", told The
Daily Telegraph: "We have not received an invitation to attend the
Archbishop's service.

"You know Lambeth is just a club, the Lambeth Conference is a fellowship and
the Archbishop of Canterbury marries women marrying women and men marrying

"He is on the wrong side of the scriptures and commits blasphemy."

He said Mr Kunonga is the rightful leader of the only Anglican church in

"The courts have said this, and the constitution backs us and so this visit
by the Archbishop is just political," Mr Chisango said.

Mr Kunonga, who accepted a previously white-owned farm from Mr Mugabe and
describes the ageing statesman as a "prophet of God," split from the
Anglican province of Central Africa in 2007 on the pretence of the
ordination of homosexuals to the priesthood.

He was excommunicated the following year but has since declared himself an
archbishop and seized control of millions of pounds' worth of Anglican
property accumulated over a century including Harare's cathedral, mission
schools and a rural orphanage which he plans to turn into a fee-paying

Anglicans who tried to return to their churches were in some cases chased
out by Mr Mugabe's security forces, and are now forced to worship in fields,
tents, private dwellings and sports clubs.

Dr Williams is due to arrive in Zimbabwe next Sunday and will lead a service
in a Harare sports centre before travelling to the east of the country,
where the discovery of diamonds has brought accusations of human rights

He has also requested a meeting with Mr Mugabe in the hope he can heal the
rift in the church.

The Archbishop of Canterbury's office declined to comment on Mr Kunonga's

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Indigenisation: Zanu PF leaders at war over country’s mines

30/09/2011 11:14:00    By

Gweru,-The president of the Affirmative Action Group, Supa Mandiwanzira has
castigated Zanu-PF politicians who are fighting for Zimplats shares, a huge
profit making platinum mine.

Speaking at public lecture at the Midlands State University titled
"Demystifying Indeginisation" Mandiwanzira said as AAG they are against
those that are stepping on each others toes in a bid to get acontrolling

"We ask these people that we have been reading about to back off. Zimplats
is a big company that can not be taken by an individual. We are saying every
Zimbabwean should benefit from such big profit making companies therefore
every one should get the shares instead of one person."

Mandiwanzira also said it was untrue that the Indeginisation Act was scaring
away investors.

"Those that claim the act is scaring investors away are lying. How can they
be scared aware by a law ? They want platinum, gold and other things that we
have so they will still come to invest because we have what they want. Bill
Gates who is said to be the richest person only owns 12% of Microsoft yet
our law offers the foreigners 49%," he explained.

He added that Zimbabwe can not be compared to other countries on the Act as
other countries do not need it because they do not have the natural
resources that foreigners badly need to exploit.

Mandiwanzira also said, "If you go to the Ministry of mines you will find
long queues of foreigners who want to invest in mining so it means investors
are coming."

On the issue of whether the act will empower everyone, Mandiwanzira said it
is not possible for everyone to benefit on the 51% issue.

"There is no democracy in business , to be able to get into business, you
need to be clever and wise, possess the ability to work very hard, to be
strong such that you are able to rise again if you fall. There is no
democracy in business because it’s highly competitive thereby it’s
individualistic in nature.

“We shall not lie to people that everyone will benefit from the 51% policy
because there is indeginisation, it is only the clever ones that are near
the opportunities and have the knowledge of the companies that will

Mandiwanzira claimed that except for the Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai,
all other coalition partners acknowledge that the Indeginisation Act is a
good policy.

He warned, "The PM is in the minority and this can cost him votes because
his supporters are eager to benefit from the Act."

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Pressure mounts on foreign firms in Zim

JASON MOYO Sep 30 2011 11:56

As Zimbabwe begins investigating 700 foreign-owned companies that missed
this week's deadline to submit plans on the sale of majority shares to
locals, investors are looking to a deal struck by Old Mutual for clues on

Empowerment Minister Saviour Kasukuwere wants the companies to submit
"acceptable" proposals but the guidelines on what exactly is required remain

The Old Mutual deal involves the parcelling out of cash and shares to
several groups and putting up cash for farmers and the construction of
low-cost homes.

The pressure was turned up on foreign companies this week after the deadline
for foreign companies to submit proposals passed.

Wilson Gwatiringa, head of a board tasked with monitoring compliance with
the empowerment law, said firms yet to submit proposals would face "serious
consequences", which would include "cancellation or suspension of operating
licences as well as payment of hefty fines".

A team of officials from Kasukuwere's ministry and the police had been set
up to investigate non-compliant firms, he said.

Under the law, foreign investors must sell 51% of their equity to local
black people by 2015.

Threats over missed deadlines are not new and it remains to be seen whether
government will carry out its threats. Industry Minister Welshman Ncube said
the law required the minister to demand revised proposals only when no
acceptable offer had been made. "This thing about cancellation of licences
is not in the law," he said.

There is growing suspicion within the government that the constant
threatening of foreign firms could be a ploy by some leaders to profit by
offering "protection" to foreign investors. Also differences have appeared
among Zanu-PF ministers over how the law should be applied.


Kasukuwere issued threats but Mines Minister Obert Mpofu said only he had
the power to cancel licences. "The discussions that have been taking place
have not been exhausted," Mpofu said.

Structuring the proposal
Many companies have been watching to see how Old Mutual would structure its
empowerment proposal. The company, the largest of its kind on the Zimbabwe
stock exchange, has significant commercial property holdings and is the
largest provider of insurance in the country.

As a first step towards the required 51%, Old Mutual agreed to set aside 25%
for staff, pensioners, policyholders, a youth fund and black investors.

According to Kasukuwere, Old Mutual policyholders will get a 10% stake and
workers 9%, with the rest being placed in a "youth development fund". Old
Mutual will give a $10-million grant to the youth fund, and also set up an
additional $1-million from the Old Mutual Fund.

The company will spend $15-million building 1 500 houses in Budiriro, a
township in Harare and contribute to the $40-million national housing fund.
A 3.5% shareholding will be sold to private investment partners.

It is unclear whether Old Mutual has already identified those partners, or
whether the government will hand pick investors, which, under some
interpretations of the law, Kasukuwere is entitled to do.

Old Mutual will hold discussions with the government in November on the sale
of the remaining 26%.

The deal was a surprise, as the government rejected a proposal by Zimplats,
a subsidiary of South Africa's Implats, that would take social investment
into account. Zimplats was told to submit a revised proposal by November 15.

Other companies are also selling shares to staff in a bid to meet the
requirements. Meikles, which owns hotels, department stores and jointly owns
a supermarket chain with Pick n Pay, plans to sell 10% of its shares to

The international heads of companies operating in Zimbabwe have been queuing
up to see Kasukuwere. Last week, he met Standard Chartered's chief executive
for Africa, Diana Layfield, who reportedly insisted on the holding company
retaining a majority share of Standard Charted Bank Zimbabwe. The bank
offered 10% to locals, but Kasukuwere said the government would not accept
any plan that left control in the hands of foreigners.

"The law is clear. It's 51% shareholding to indigenous people, not the 10%
they are talking about. Their plan is unacceptable," he said.

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Mining firms ordered to transfer shares next month

By Tererai Karimakwenda
30 September, 2011

Zimbabwe’s Indigenisation Minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, told journalists on
Thursday that most of the large mining companies had complied with the
country’s indigenisation laws, requiring foreign firms to give up 51 percent
of their shares to black locals.

The controversial minister then raised eyebrows by announcing that the
mining companies were now expected to start transferring shares next month,
although the law allows them up to five years to complete the process.

Kasukuwere said those who fail to comply will lose their licenses or face
some other legal sanction. Mining officials have said it is not clear how
they will be compensated for the shares they are to lose and they do not
know who the beneficiaries will be.

Voice of America’s Studio 7 news quoted mining executives who said
Kasukuwere has ordered them to “set up community trusts whose beneficiaries
are not clearly indicated.”
The report said in the case of platinum producer Zimplats, “the principals
of the trust would receive a ten percent stake in the South
African-controlled firm”, and those principals include Kasukuwere himself
and other ministers.

Businessman Luke Zunga from the Global Zim Forum, said it is not possible
for the mining firms to start transfers next month because the process takes
much more time than Kasukuwere has allowed.

“These trusts would have to be set up and registered, and then raise the
funds to buy shares from the mining companies. This takes much longer than a
month,” Zunga explained.

He added that mining firms will most likely take the maximum amount of time
allowed by law, five years, to set up the trusts and implement all the items
contained in their indigenisation proposals.

Zunga said he agrees with those who say Kasukuwere and his so-called
indigenisation plans are just a scam to loot white owned businesses under
the guise of “empowerment”. The programme also discourages much needed
foreign investments.

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Daily Newspapers 'Lying' About Readership, Claims Geoff Nyarota

Harare, September 30 , 2011 -Firebrand Journalist and former Editor-in-Chief
of The Daily News newspaper, Geoffrey Nyarota, says two of the three daily
newspapers currently operating in Zimbabwe are "lying about its readership

Addressing senior journalists gathered for the half-day MISA Zimbabwe indaba
on "Zimbabwe Media Ethics", Nyarota said: "There is now a general disregard
for ethics of journalism in Zimbabwe today. How can three daily newspapers
currently operating in Zimbabwe, The Herald, The Daily News and News Day all
claim to be the best in Zimbabwe.

"Only one newspaper can be the people's choice and which people enjoy. Only
one newspaper can thus claim to have the widest circulation and so two of
the three daily newspapers are lying to the people, and deliberately so."

The three daily newspapers, The Herald, published by the State-controlled
Zimbabwe Newspapers (1980) Limited Group, The Daily News published by the
Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe (Private) Limited and News Day published
by Alpha Media Holdings (Private) Limited, all told readers on their front
pages that they had "scooped' the top readership trophy and had the "most
readers and widest coverage in Zimbabwe".

They quoted the Zimbabwe All Media Promotion Survey (Zamps).

The Herald in its headline said: "The Herald Tops", The Daily News said:
"Most Widely Read", while Newsday said: "Newsday Rules The Roost".

Nyarota said: "I call upon the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) and
the Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe (VMCZ) to take this issue seriously
because it amounts to a scandal for the readership. This is a good story for
all of us as journalists to follow and really find out which of the two
newspapers is actually lying about their readership and circulation figures.
A thorough investigation is needed otherwise we are all shortchanging our

The MISA Zimbabwe Chapter was represented at the indaba by its Executive
Director, Nhlanhla Ngwenya while the VMCZ had Takura Zhangaza, a Director

The two gentlemen simply nodded after Nyarota's remarks.

"Last year we all celebrated after the Zimbabwe Media Council (ZMC) had
given publishing licences to The Daily News, News Day, The Mail and several
other newspapers for publication in Zimbabwe," Nyarota said.

"We all thought that we were going to access more and better information but
unfortunately, this is not the case because falsehoods are slowly creeping
into our newsrooms.

"We have misleading headlines such as 'Top Cop Arrested', 'Mugabe Paralysed'
etc which are misleading and only meant to help the newspaper's circulation
figures which is wrong," a visibly worried Nyarota said.

Nyarota has been Editor of the Bulawayo-based Chronicle daily newspaper, The
Financial Gazette weekly newspaper, and The Daily News, which he founded
together with another veteran journalist, London-based Editor-in-Chief of
The Zimbabwean and The Zimbabwean on Sunday, Wilf Mbanga.

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CIO’s Thuthani a “heroine”

Nothando Thuthani, the deputy head of a division of Zimbabwe’s spy
organisation, the Central Intelligence Organisation, CIO, who died Wednesday
morning, has been declared a liberation war heroine. She was the highest
ranking female CIO officer.
by Staff Reporter

Thuthani, 57, died at the private West End hospital in Harare. The spy
agency boss, Happyton Bonyongwe said in a statement she died "after a short

The CIO deputy director- External Branch, was one of the intelligence chiefs
who loomeed largely in the shadows, unknown to the public. But she was a
member of the powerful Joint Operations Command - a

thinktank of top security officials - for 11 years. The thinktank has been
the brains behind the regime of President Robert Mugabe and his political
grouping, Zanu (PF).

It is among the country’s most serious perpetrators of widespread human
rights abuses Thuthani, who hailed from Marondera, has been declared a
liberation war heroine by the Zanu PF Politburo.

After studying for BA (Honours) degree in Public Administration at Sheffield
City Polytechnic in the UK in the 70s, she worked closely with the Zanu
branch in the UK and was also involved in the Lancaster House talks that
ushered in Zimbabwe's independence in 1980.

She worked in the Zanu PF commisariat after Independence and later joined
government service. She was attested into the spy agency in 1983 as a desk
officer, rising through the ranks.

In 2000 she was deployed to head the Zimbabwe Consular in Ethiopia before
she returned home where she was promoted to assistant director before she
rose to become deputy director.

Bonyongwe said in a rare press statement Thuthani's death was a great loss
to Zimbabwe.

"While the organisation is at loss, the service is determined to honour a
great woman. Allow me to pay tribute to this great woman who was a mother,
an intelligence officer, a diplomat, a leader of rare qualities, a
politician, a social activist, a human rights defender and a cadre on the
front line. She was also a champion of the advancement of gender equality
and social justice," Bonyongwe said.

She is survived by two children.

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Police Dismantle Diamond Trafficking Network in Manica

29 September 2011

Maputo — The Mozambican police have dismantled a network of traffickers
dealing in diamonds from Marange in neighbouring Zimbabwe, reports the daily
newspaper "Diario de Mocambique".

Diamonds mined in Marange have systematically been smuggled into Mozambique
and sold in the city of Manica, in Manica province.

According to district police commander Pedro Manuel Jemusse, it was agreed
at a recent meeting between the Mozambican police and their Zimbabwean
counterparts that local action in Zimbabwe should be intensified to combat
diamond smuggling.

Jemusse told "Diario de Mocambique" that the diamond smuggling network based
in Manica, which was mainly composed of Pakistani citizens, has been

The police commander stated that the police will continue to work to combat
the smuggling of diamonds over the border with Zimbabwe at Machipanda.

The police chief also reported that a gang of cattle rustlers in Manica
district has just recently been dismantled.

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Amnesty International to launch  report

Zimbabwe: On 5 October Amnesty International will launch a report looking at
the devastating impact of the 2005 mass forced eviction program on the
education of children and young people in Harare.

LONDON, United-Kingdom, September 30, 2011/African Press Organization
(APO)/ -- The report will launch at a press conference in Harare. All media
are welcome to attend.


Who: Amnesty International

What: Launch of Left Behind: The impact of Zimbabwe's mass forced evictions
on the right to education which examines the impact of Zimbabwe's mass
forced eviction on the right to education

When: 10.00am Local time (08.00 GMT), Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Where: Harare Gardens, Ben Shelf Pavilion opposite former Sherrol's in the
Park restaurant

Amnesty International's southern Africa researcher, and report author,
Simeon Mawanza will be at the press conference and is available for
interviews. Also available for interviews is Amnesty International Zimbabwe
director Cousin Zilala.

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Zimbabwe is set for more uncertainty

Posted By Ian Bremmer Friday, September 30, 2011 - 2:03 PM

By Anne Fruehauf

Despite a historic 2008 power-sharing agreement, Zimbabwe is not out of the
political woods. President Robert Mugabe's failing health is fueling both an
unseemly scramble among Zimbabwe's elites for a share of the country's
wealth, and also disputes over the succession. While an all-out asset grab
is unlikely (in part because of elite squabbling), Zimbabwe is set to
experience another round of volatility and uncertainty that will last at
least until after the next elections, which are not likely to occur until

Mugabe's Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) is
trapped in an awkward unity government with its bitter rival, the Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC) headed by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. Both
parties are maneuvering ahead of upcoming elections, but even the date is
disputed. Mugabe is pushing for polls in 2012, while the MDC and the
Southern African Development Community are pressing for 2013 in order to
allow time for overdue political reforms. The MDC should be able to win
minimally free and fair elections, but another coalition government
(involving all or part of ZANU-PF) seems a more plausible outcome at

Mugabe, now 87, has long been rumored to be suffering from prostate cancer,
raising doubts about his ability to carry on in office. Succession concerns
and the party's uncertain future are reinforcing efforts to push through a
controversial indigenization law of 2007. The law requires foreign
businesses to cede 51 percent of their equity to indigenous Zimbabweans
within five years. In part, the goal is to secure large amounts of cash for
ZANU-PF ahead of the upcoming elections, but elites are also taking
advantage of the program to syphon off money for private and party gain.

ZANU-PF has haphazardly implemented the legislation and the law is weak,
riddled with loopholes, and probably unconstitutional, according to legal
experts. It foresees no specific timeframe for indigenization, but
regulations issued in 2010 and 2011 give effect to the law, implying a
cut-off point of 2015. The MDC does not support the scheme, which it views
as a self-enrichment scheme for ZANU-PF bigwigs, which could cost it an
election and the country much-needed investment. But it is unable to exert
moderating pressure on ZANU-PF on this issue despite its control of the
finance ministry and improvements to macroeconomic policy. This means the
law's revocation or overhaul is inconceivable, at least until the 2013
elections and probably beyond.

Disagreements within ZANU-PF will make for a chaotic process, however.
Minister of Youth Empowerment and Indigenization Saviour Kasukuwere is
already running into opposition from Minister of Mines Obert Mpofu, whose
department controls licensing. Although Mpofu is a Mugabe ally and supports
indigenization, he has rejected attempts by Kasukuwere, his junior, to
dictate policy. This rivalry among ZANU-PF players renders government
relations increasingly unpredictable. Uncertainty over indigenization will
likely stall investment and give an advantage to emerging market investors
unencumbered by targeted Western sanctions, which include the state miner

Threats to revoke licenses or demands for irregular payments are likely as
political players try to maneuver themselves or their front men into
shareholder positions. Impala Platinum, which produces around 25 percent of
global platinum output from mines in South Africa and Zimbabwe, for example
received a letter from Kasukuwere on September 6 threatening to revoke its
mining license unless it submitted acceptable indigenization proposals.

In the meantime, elites within ZANU-PF are jockeying for position given
Mugabe's illness. Vice President Joyce Mujuru will be Mugabe's likely
interim successor, if he becomes incapacitated while in office, but ZANU-PF
factionalism raises the specter of a contested political transition. The
constitution, which is yet to be reformed, stipulates that fresh elections
be held within 90 days of the president's incapacitation. But the 2008
power-sharing agreement requires vacancies to be filled by the same party;
this means Mujuru is next in line until fresh elections are held. However,
the mysterious death of her powerful husband Gen. Solomon Mujuru in August
may embolden rival factions, such as that led by Minister of Defense
Emmerson Mnangagwa, to challenge her succession bid.

Anne Fruehauf is an analyst with Eurasia Group's Africa practice

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The University of Iowa and Drake University to host Roy Bennett

The University of Iowa International Programs, a USCCD member organization,
will host the WorldCanvass Studio: "Roy Bennett and the Hard Road to
Democracy" on October 3 from 2-3 pm at the University Capitol Centre, Room

Bennett will also appear at Drake University on Wednesday, October 5 at
Sheslow Auditorium from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Both events are free and open to
the public.

Roy Bennett is the deputy minister of agriculture – designate (Zimbabwe),
and treasurer of Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

According to the University of Iowa International Programs' website:

"The MDC won the very tight 2008 election, and was recognized
internationally as the winner; however, Robert Mugabe and his party, the
Zimbabwe African National Union, refused to give up control. After the MDC
agreed to share power with Mugabe's party, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai
designated Bennett deputy minister of agriculture."

Since then, Bennett has been imprisoned several times and continues his
human rights fight in Zimbabwe, as well as the fight for democracy.

At the University of Iowa event, Bennett will not be the only participant in
the WorldCanvass Studio. Lymobe Eko, UI professor of journalism and mass
communication and co- director of the African Studies Program and Farai
Marazi, a IU doctoral student in anthropology from Zimbabwe will also
participate in the event.

This is a great opportunity to learn more about the fight for democracy and
human rights in Zimbabwe. Don't miss out – attend one of these events on
October 3 or October 5!

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The Grace Mugabe Wikileaks weekend special
First Lady Grace Mugabe always makes good copy. This even applied to the Wikileaks cables where she is cited in 85 cables, more than double those for Vice President Joice Mujuru. We will be publishing as many as we can this weekend.

Here are the cables:

7-Who travels with the President?

6-US embassy wanted to reward Josiah Hungwe for providing useful information- Wikileaks

5-Mobile phone bosses arrested for externalisation.

4-Gono laughs off Made’s crop forecasts

3-First Lady goes “shopping” for a dairy farm

2-First Lady eyes farm with 27-room mansion!

1-Editor arrested for publishing “false story” on First Lady


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