External relations − 29-09-2010 - 12:19
Committee: Foreign Affairs
The international community should lift sanctions against Zimbabwe, so as to
facilitate efforts to resolve its ongoing crisis, South-Africa's President
Jacob Zuma told Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs on Wednesday. On his first
visit to the European Parliament, MEPs urged Mr Zuma to take the lead in
helping to resolve some of Africa’s most acute conflicts.
"On Zimbabwe, we gave leadership before anybody else did and the current
power-sharing deal was facilitated by South Africa", Mr Zuma told MEPs, as
he called on the international community to lift sanctions against it. "This
would give a chance to the efforts we are making there and empower the
Southern African Development Community to do more on Zimbabwe", he added in
reply to questions by Louis Michel (ALDE, BE), Co-president of the ACP-EU
Joint Parliamentary Assembly, Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL) and
Geoffrey Van Orden (ECR, UK).
Commenting on EU and US travel bans and asset freezes imposed on some of
Zimbabwe's leading figures, including President Mugabe, Mr Zuma said that
"sticking to the sanctions on individuals will give credit to the argument
of the Zanu PF [President Mugabe's political party] that the functioning of
the unity government is not supported to the fullest".
MEPs urged Mr Zuma that South Africa should play a more active role in
helping to resolve some of the continent’s most acute crises.
Asked by Graham Watson (ALDE, UK) about press freedom in South Africa and
the ANC's proposed media appeals tribunals, Mr Zuma said that "as the ruling
party, ANC has a responsibility to protect citizens’ rights to privacy and
freedom of the media is the only unregulated freedom. It cannot be abused".
EU to play a leading role in the developing world
In his initial address to MEPs, Mr Zuma underlined the strong ties between
the EU and Africa’s largest economy. "Trade relations between the EU and the
African, Caribbean and Pacific group of states are of critical importance",
he said, adding that he is committed to concluding an Economic Partnership
Agreement with SADC "provided the issue of rules of origin can be resolved".
"The EU can play an important role in the developing world", he said,
underlining the importance of the EU-Africa Summit to be held in Libya in
November and adding that "the European Parliament and the Joint Parliament
Assembly have a critical role to play in the oversight of relations with
Africa and the developing world in general. It is an engine that can drive
deeper understanding between the EU and the rest of the world".
Michael Cashman (S&D, UK), Chair of Parliament’s delegation with South
Africa, and Michael Gahler (EPP, DE), Chair of Parliament’s delegation with
the Pan-African Parliament, also took part in a bilateral meeting between
European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek and President Zuma.
In the Chair: Fiorello Provera (EFD, IT)
South Africa has been accused of "acquiescing" whilst people in Zimbabwe starved, during a hearing with the country's president, Jacob Zuma.
The attack was made by British Conservative MEP Geoffrey Van Orden, as the president appeared in front of the European Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee on 29 September 2010.
However President Zuma - who replaced Thabo Mbeki in March 2010 - defended his country's record.
He told MEPs that South Africa "gave leadership before anyone else did", and claimed the country had forced Robert Mugabe to tighten specific clauses in Zimbabwe's constitution, such as on vote counting.
He also urged the international community to lift sanctions to enable the South African Development Community (SADC) to do more to help Zimbabweans.
Also during the evidence session, Belgian nationalist MEP Philip Claes said that more needed to be done to halt the murder of white farmers, claiming that there had been over 3,000 cases since 1994.
British Liberal Democrat MEP Graham Watson raised concerns over new media laws in South Africa and called on President Zuma to ensure that press freedom was maintained.
The president said he was keen to defend the freedom of the press, but insisted rules were needed to ensure that the press "did not abuse that freedom".
By Lance Guma
29 September 2010
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has blamed his coalition partner ZANU PF
for destroying the economy and shot holes into their persistent claims that
targeted sanctions were to blame. Speaking at a public accountability
seminar in Harare on Monday Tsvangirai said; 'Our problems emanated from
mis-governance, the violent land reform and RBZ's printing of worthless
currency, that is the bearer cheques.'
Tsvangirai said all these compounded to turn 'a political problem to an
economic one'. He denied there were any economic sanctions on the country
but said they were 'restrictive measures.' The Prime Minister was referring
to targeted financial and travel restrictions imposed by western countries
on people and companies in Mugabe's inner circle, who have benefited from
human rights abuses.
So why has Tsvangirai's MDC-T party agreed to be part of a government
re-engagement committee campaigning to have the measures removed? The MDC-T
leader told the seminar; 'We have agreed as principals to tackle the issue
of restrictive measures as this isolation has affected the lines of credit.'
He also said ZANU PF's 'deliberate campaign of intimidation, abusing the
rule of law' among other things had decimated the economy and scared away
This week the re-engagement committee met US politicians in a futile attempt
to get them to remove the targeted sanctions. The US said although it
recognized the economic advances made in Zimbabwe, there was no progress on
the political front or terms of respect for human and property rights. They
said the 'current political and human rights environment in Zimbabwe
remained troublesome' and said 'Zimbabwe must make further progress before
the targeted sanctions would be removed'.
It has not helped that disharmony between the coalition partners has shown
their arrangement to be unworkable. Mugabe has refused to review the
appointments of the central bank governor and attorney general, swear in
MDC-T nominee for Deputy Agriculture Minister Roy Bennett or appoint MDC-T
and MDC-M governors as agreed in the GPA. The ZANU PF leader has used the
maintenance of targeted sanctions as the excuse for not honouring his
obligations under the deal.
The death of ZANU PF spokesman Ephraim Masawi on Saturday also exposed
another contentious issue, that of the partisan nature of national hero
selection. The two MDC formations have said they will not attend his burial
at the national Heroes Acre. MDC-T spokesman Nelson Chamisa likened the
burial to a private ZANU PF ceremony saying, "We have never been known to be
gatecrashers. It's a gated and walled affair and we respect their bedroom,
so why should we barge in?"
When MDC founding figure Gibson Sibanda died in August, ZANU PF refused to
recognize him as a national hero, sparking angry reactions from the two MDC
formations. The granting of hero status to Masawi, who did not even fight in
the liberation war, will further infuriate the coalition partners even more.
By Alex Bell
29 September 2010
The intimidation of the country's remaining commercial farmers is once again
intensifying, and there have been no attempts from the government,
particularly the Prime Minister, to prevent more illegal farm seizures.
Farmers across the country have turned to Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai
to put a stop to ongoing land attacks, which have continued regardless of
his presence in the unity government. But the pleas appear to have fallen on
deaf ears, and the situation is once again beginning to take an ugly turn.
Catherine Jouineau-Meredith's Twyford Farm was burned to the ground earlier
this month by the ZANU PF senator who has led violent attacks on the
property since last year, claiming he has an 'Offer Letter' for the
property. Senator Jamaya Muduvuri moved on to the farm in March this year
after successfully evicting Jouineau-Meredith, who was ordered to leave the
farm and fined US$200 for occupying it "illegally".
Muduvuri already owns Shiloh Farm near Kadoma, Mandalay and Brunswick farms
near Chegutu, and Hoffmarie Farm in Kadoma, clearly demonstrating that the
land grab has nothing to do with 'land reform'. Twyford farm is now the
fifth property that he has grabbed to add to his collection of unproductive
pieces of land.
As a French citizen Jouineau-Meredith is meant to be protected by a
bilateral investment protection agreement, signed between France and
Zimbabwe. But this BIPPA, like others meant to protect foreign owned land in
Zimbabwe, has been completely ignored. Jouineau-Meredith also has a High
Court order from 2007 that recognised her rights to the farm. But again, the
total disregard for the rule of law in Zimbabwe means the court order has
offered no protection against illegal land invasions.
Senator Muduvuri has already looted the once productive farm of all its
crops and equipment, and Jouineau-Meredith has repeatedly called on Prime
Minister Tsvangirai to intervene over the past year. In March this year,
Tsvangirai's office told Jouineau-Meredith to "disengage in Chegutu," and
not try to recover her farm equipment and the rest of her belongings. She
was assured that a letter cancelling Muduvuri's Offer Letter had been signed
by the Prime Minister and Vice President John Nkomo. But after several
attempts to get the letter, the Prime Minister's office stopped
communicating with her and refused to return her calls.
Jouineau-Meredith wrote another letter to the Prime Minister's office last
week expressing anger that there has been nothing but empty promises in
reaction to her plight.
"I am now seeking FULL COMPENSATION for the loss of my French BIPPA farm as
per the Land Reform Legislation regarding BIPPA farms. The farm represents a
FRENCH INVESTMENT in Zimbabwe and is therefore liable for compensation in
EURO the day it was taken away from me," Jouineau-Meredith wrote.
Deon Theron, the President of the Commercial Farmers Union (CFU), told SW
Radio Africa on Wednesday that the situation "is returning to the old ways
when the land reform programme started." He explained that he is also under
threat, again, after already losing three farms since 2000. Theron has been
living with his mother Hester, who was last year threatened with a jail term
for refusing to leave her dairy farm and home of 50 years. The elderly widow
was eventually granted a court interdict that stopped her eviction and was
meant to protect her from the 'beneficiary' of her property.
But Theron said that the harassment against him and his mother has
intensified despite the court order, and they are now locked out of their
home. Theron explained that land invaders, assisted by the police, have
managed to break into their home on the farm and lock the family out. The
CFU president said that although he has limited access to the farm, land
invaders have taken over and even the police have been involved.
"It is a very scary, tragic situation, and it can only spell out bad things
for the future of this country," Theron said. "There is no respect for
international BIPPAs, no respect for our own courts, and as long as we don't
have respect for the rule of law, then we are lost."
Theron continued saying that similar incidents are occurring throughout the
country, where farmers have reported worsening threats and intimidation over
the last few weeks. He explained that the CFU has tried to get the
intervention of the MDC, to no avail, and even urgent pleas to the
co-Ministers of Home Affairs have been ignored.
"Things are getting very serious, and until someone from government stands
up and says that this is wrong, then we won't have any change," Theron said.
By Oscar Nkala
Wednesday, 29 September 2010 15:50
BULAWAYO - A group led by Zanu PF supporters and war veterans has invaded
Denlynian and Tamari Wildlife farms in Beitbridge where they have ransacked
the places amid reports that property worth millions of dollars was looted.
The Daily News understands that the two farms have been decimated of
endangered wildlife species, while the fence that was used to protect
animals was stolen and 2000 hectares of virgin forest was destroyed by veld
The group, which calls itself the 'Zhovhe Conservancy Society' is said to be
composed of civil servants, members of the army, the police, the Central
Intelligence Organisation (CIO), Beitbridge Rural District Council staff and
Zanu PF activists.
In a statement, Zimbabwe Conservation Taskforce (ZCTF) chairman Johnny
Rodrigues expressed dismay at the continued invasion of wildlife farms and
the wanton destruction of property, including endangered game species at the
"It is now ten years since the implementation of the land reform programme
and the very few game farms left are still being invaded. The invaders have
spent the last ten years vandalising the properties and slaughtering the
wildlife that was previously abundant.
"They have especially targeted zebra and eland. The eland population has
dropped from 973 in 2000 to 374 - a drop of 560 animals and the zebra
population has fallen from 871 to 163 animals, a drop of 708 animals,"
He added that the invaders are creating an ecological disaster, destroying
nearly 200 hectares of trees to open up land for tillage when the land is
only fit for wildlife farming.
"The ecosystem is now so fragile that if the land is tilled, the soil will
end up in the river. Seven kilometres of 16 strand game fence has been
stolen to make snares. We have received information that seven animals were
killed last week comprising eland, wildebeest, impala and the slaughter is
He said the owners of the invaded game farms had checked with the Deeds
Registry office and found no organisation registered as the Zhovhe
Conservancy Co-operative. The invaders have also reportedly ignored several
court orders to leave the farm, and the police, who are among the invaders,
have so far refused to enforce the court orders.
Environment minister Francis Nhema declined to comment on the developments
in Beitbridge saying he could only do so after receiving a full report on
the situation from his officers on the ground. "For now I cannot comment
because no one has raised the issue with me. It's news to me," Nhema said.
The ongoing plunder of wildlife, particularly elephants, rhinos and zebras
has grown into a highly lucrative industry and security forces and
government officials have been implicated in many detailed reports.
However, no one has been arrested and there are no indications that the
state will be swooping on the high profile poachers who still walk the
corridors of power in this country.
By Tichaona Sibanda
29 September 2010
The COPAC management committee has condemned the fact that 42 outreach
meetings were not done properly or were abandoned in Harare, as a result of
violence, and wants them done again
COPAC co-chairperson Douglas Mwonzora said they've carried out an exercise
to analyze what happened at each and every meeting held between 18th and
Mwonzora, an MDC-T legislator for Nyanga, told us on Wednesday the
rescheduled meetings have been penciled down for weekend after next. But
COPAC has ordered that all meetings should be held under certain conditions
to avoid what happened before.
'Between today (Wednesday) and next weekend we will have ten days to put
down conditions that will allow people in Harare the freedom to air their
views freely,' Mwonzora said.
'First there must be clear mechanisms to contain and maintain law and order.
We will approach the co-Home Affairs ministers and the Commissioner General
to ensure they guarantee the safety of participants,' he added.
The MDC-T legislator said there must be public statements by all political
parties denouncing violence, racism, intimidation and other malpractices
during the process.
'We should also get co-operation from the ZBC as a public broadcaster to
inform people of the venues. Significantly we've had to breakdown the
meetings in Harare into smaller manageable groups. This effectively
increases the number of meetings centres in Harare,' Mwonzora said.
The public hearings had to be called off in Harare and in Chitungwiza after
violence broke out during meetings last week. Crispen Mandizvidza, an MDC
activist, died from injuries sustained after he was assaulted in Mbare.
A row over the aborted outreach program was also threatening to torpedo the
harmony within the COPAC management team after ZANU PF tried to block the
rescheduling of the abandoned meetings.
Mwonzora said they were also looking at recommendations proposing that where
there were doubts about the fairness of the meetings, they have to be redone
'But before this can happen we urge President Mugabe as Commander-in-chief
of the armed forces to act on lawlessness. In the last few weeks we've
noticed some misbehaviour by members of the security forces. We need the
President to put his foot down and act decisively on errant members of the
uniformed forces,' Mwonzora added.
A committee leading the crafting of the country's new constitution wants the
leaders of country's three political parties to publicly denounce violence
before they can resume abandoned consultative meetings in Harare and
The Constitutional Parliamentary Committee (COPAC) says it is necessary for
the leaders to emphatically denounce violence as a measure to help the
progress of the exercise.
"We have said that we want the political parties to speak against violence
publicly and this must be done at the most senior level of
the parties," COPAC co-chairperson Douglas Mwonzora who represents the MDC
party led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai told Radio VOP.
His colleague Paul Mangwana who represents Zanu PF in the committee said
there is consensus that the areas that were disrupted must be
redone as was the case in many other parts of the country where violence was
However Mwonzora said the meetings that were disrupted even those that were
partially completed should be redone. About 42 meetings had been
done out of a total of 72. Apart from the call for the political leaders to
denounce violence the committee also want the Zimbabwe Broadcasting
Corporation (ZBC) which initially denied COPAC adverts airtime to
prominently publicise the venues of the meetings and the time. Furthermore
the committee want Police Commissioner General Augustine Chihuri to issue a
stern warning to would be perpetrators of violence on national television.
addition they want him to set up road blocks at roads leading to meeting
venues to avoid the bussing in of people.
COPAC meetings in Harare and Chitungwiza were suspended two weeks ago after
violence caused by Zanu PF supporters broke out. The violence was so intense
that even the parliamentarians recording the people's views had to take to
their heels. An MDC supporter died from injuries sustained after he was
attacked by Zanu PF supporters.
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai on Monday decried the violence that has so
far marred the constitution making process and hinted that due
to it the final document might have to be negotiated among political
On the other hand the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), for long a
critic of the parliamentary led process, says the politicians must
swallow they pride and set up an independent commission to complete the
A new constitution is expected to usher in a new culture of democracy and
the respect of human rights. The country is currently using a patched-up
Lancaster House constitution, which Mugabe has used over the years to
maintain an iron fist rule on the country.
According to a Global Political Agreement (GPA) timeline the country is
supposed to have elections next year soon after the adoption of the
29 September, 2010 03:00:00 Staff Reporter
BULAWAYO – Zimbabwean armed security forces and secret services agents have
been deployed in the Matabeleland Provinces in an “undeclared State of
emergency” geared to suppress inclusion of devolution of power in the new
constitution reform process under way, sources in the coalition government
revealed this morning.
The faltering new Zimbabwe constitution process which is under way is one of
the requirements stipulated by the Global Political Agreement, signed in
September 2008 between Zimbabwe's three main political parties: the MDC, a
smaller group of the MDC led by Arthur Mutambara, and ZANU-PF led by Mugabe,
president in the current coalition government.
With the re-emergency of ZAPU led by former ZIPRA Intelligence Supremo
Dumiso Dabengwa, the political dynamics have changed and the fragile peace
pact that has existed for years as a result of the Unity Accord signed
between two protagonists Robert Mugabe and the late Joshua Nkomo is now
In the region, armed soldiers and police officers are making their presence
felt by engaging in unusually busy patrols, and road blocks mounted in urban
areas and highway. Armed helicopters and Airforce jet fighters have been
making sporadic sorties in both Mateleland North and South Provinces.
Heavy artillery military vehicles have been spotted in the streets. Bars and
community gatherings have been swamped by secret service agents.
In the streets of Bulawayo, members of the army and police have been accused
of harassing and intimidating innocent city residents in what is being
called an undeclared 'state of emergency'.
According to the Matabeleland Civil Society Consortium the police have been
rounding up, beating and arresting people in Bulawayo. But while police
officials say they are just tightening security, the Consortium says people
are living in fear as a result of the police's actions.
The 'tightened security' has come in the aftermath of a shooting earlier
this month during an armed robbery, which resulted in the death of a police
chief and many in the region now think the Senior police officer was killed
by secret agents in order to have a reason to deploy State forces of terror.
Some media reports say the senior police officer was gunned down by rival
Zanu PF factions.
The death saw Defence Force Commander Constantine Chiwenga announce that the
army would be sent into Bulawayo to deal with the scourge of armed robberies
in the city. The result has been a clamp down on the public and reports of
The Civil Society Consortium has since challenged the police to come out in
the open and declare that Bulawayo is now under a 'curfew'. The group's
Dumisani Nkomo said it was as if Bulawayo was under a "state of emergency or
curfew" which has not been declared.
"If the police want to impose a curfew for the purposes of hunting down
criminals, then they should do so and if that is the real intention I do not
see any law-abiding citizen objecting to that," he said. "What is obviously
wrong is for the police to work as if there is a curfew when they have not
A Bulawayo correspondent for SW Radio Lionel Saungweme agreed that there was
an undeclared curfew, explaining that road blocks are being set up every
evening on the main roads leading out of the city. Saungweme said the public
are being heavily monitored and some have even been forced to undergo strip
searches on the streets. There have also been reports of assault at the
hands of the police, if anyone tries to resist being stopped and searched.
Saungweme continued by saying that there is widespread fear that the army's
deployment to Bulawayo is a "decoy," ahead of possible elections next year.
He said that the public are afraid that the machinations of violence, seen
during the 2008 election period, are beginning to re-emerge.
There is also concern, because of the history of genocide in Matabeleland.
"There is a lot of fear that this could be the second wave of the
Gukurahundi, because this is how it all started originally," Saungweme said.
The outreach process began early in 2010 and is expected to be wrapped up by
the end of September 2010. But since about May 2010, in an operation dubbed
"Vhara Muromo", or Shut Your Mouth, members of the youth militia aligned to
ZANU-PF have allegedly been warning villagers to either shut up or support
the party's views on the new constitution.
ZANU-PF wants an existing draft constitution, commonly referred to as the
Kariba Draft, to be adopted. It places no limit on the number of
presidential terms, and gives the president wide-ranging powers.
Mugabe has ruled since independence from Britain in 1980 and the new
constitution will replace the Lancaster House Agreement, which has been
amended 19 times. The new constitution, if approved in a national
referendum, will open the way to elections in 2011.
John Makumbe, a Harare-based political scientist and university lecturer,
told IRIN he feared a referendum would lead to violence "just as we saw in
2000, when the rejection of the referendum saw the government of Mugabe
unleashing soldiers on civilians".
The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, an umbrella body for NGOs promoting human
rights, said the victimization of participants was rife. "The violent
disruptions by suspected ZANU-PF supporters, and the ensuing lethargy by the
police in stopping the violence," the coalition noted in a statement.
"The Harare disruptions give credence to earlier allegations of intimidation
and violence in rural areas, particularly Mashonaland and Manicaland
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe government has approached South African authorities
to smoke out and close down South African based Zimbabwean community
internet radio station Radio Mthwakazi FM, the brainchild of a group of
Johannesburg based Zimbabweans from the country’s western region of
The radio station was officially launched in Hillbrow towards the end of
March this year.
The Zimbabwe government has likened the radio station to the 1992, Radio
Rwanda station which was first used in directly promoting the killing of
Tutsi in Bugesera, south of the national capital Kigali.Radio Rwanda
repeatedly broadcast a communiqué warning that Hutu in Bugesera would be
attacked by Tutsi, a message used by local officials to convince Hutu that
they needed to attack first. Led by soldiers, Hutu civilians and the
Interahamwe attacked and killed hundreds of Tutsi.
"We are concerned about the erosion of the history, arts and culture
especially in the region of Matabeleland and this radio station aims to
revive that and promote our region," said Gerald Ngulube, Mthwakazi FM
station’s Global Director, and he is also its South African chairman.
Currently doing pre-recorded shows, the station broadcasts in mainly Ndebele
and Khalanga, but said it wants to expand to cover all other languages that
are spoken in the Matabeleland region. The region currently has poor
reception of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation, which has a monopoly to
broadcast in the country.
Most people in Matabeleland listen to South African and Botswana radio
Zimbabwe is required, under the Global Political Agreement (GPA), to open up
airwaves to allow more players in the industry. However the Broadcasting
Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ), which is supposed to be the regulatory body,
still has to be properly constituted. The board announced early this year by
Publicity and Information Minister Webster Shamu, was rejected by the
Movement for Democratic Change party. The board had included Tafataona
Mahoso, previously chairman of the defunct Media Information Commission
(MIC), which closed a number of newspapers and resulted in several
journalists losing their jobs.
By Staff Reporter
Wednesday, 29 September 2010 16:47
HARARE - The Office of the Auditor and Comptroller General's has said there
is a general lack of financial accountability in the public sector.
Speaking at a meeting organised by the Media Institute of Southern Africa
(MISA) and the Centre for Public Accountability (CPA) which discussed issues
of accountability in the Zimbabwe government and the larger society, the
Deputy Auditor General Spears Mutsau said the country's public sector
generally lacks corporate governance.
"The inadequacy of sound corporate governance principles is another
challenge common in the public sector. The country does not have a national
corporate governance code as in South Africa where they have the King III
code, in USA they have the Sarbanes Oxley Act while in United Kingdom they
have the Combined Code," said Mutsau.
"There is no point of reference and so accountability becomes difficult to
enforce. Without a corporate code that stipulates that there must be a
remuneration committee made up of non-executive directors who should
determine the salary packages of executive directors, we end up with cases
where executive directors award themselves hefty salaries as was reported in
the press some time ago."
A number of executives in various public bodies are reportedly taking home
huge salaries which do not match the level of service delivery.
Mutsau said his office generally faces difficulties in getting the
government bodies and ministries to submit their returns on public funds.
According to the law, the deadline for the submission of the Auditor General's
report is September 30. But the office is still working on the audits of
government ministries for the 2009 financial year.
"There are a number of challenges facing accountability in the public
sector. A number of public entities are in arrears with their financial
statements. Some entities' financial statements are as far behind as 2005
and 2006. This compromises accountability," said Mutsau.
Meanwhile, the government is working on a code of corporate governance which
is expected to be completed early next year. It is expected that the code
will act as a guide to the operations of both public and the private sector
organisations in Zimbabwe.
The government has already passed the Public Finance Management Act which
requires entities to produce plans and to issue annual reports which will
present in detail a report on service delivery as a way of enhancing public
accountability in Zimbabwe.
The Auditor General has in the past produced some telling audit reports
which unearthed how ministers and public bodies executive steal money from
the public purse through questionable transactions as
well as acts of corruption.
However, there have been no concrete follow ups on the recommendations of
the reports with the Auditor General's office largely having its hands tied
because it has no powers to act.
29 September, 2010 02:50:00 By Staff Reporter
RENAISSANCE Financial Holdings' chief executive officer Patterson Timba and
brother of MDC's Deputy Information Minister Jameson Timba yesterday
appeared at the Harare Magistrates' Court facing allegations of fraudulently
attempting to take over a mining company.
Timba is jointly charged with his brother Stephenson, the chief executive of
The two are accused of using fraudulent documents to seize ownership of
Glencairn Mine, which has several gold claims in Kadoma.
Harare provincial magistrate Mr Mishrod Guvamombe did not ask the duo to
plead to the charges and remanded them out of custody to October 12 on
US$500 bail each.
Mr Guvamombe warned them against interfering with State witnesses.
Defence lawyer Mr Innocent Chagonda of Atherstone and Cook argued that the
matter was not criminal and should be dealt with in a civil court.
He said the Attorney-General's Office had previously declined to prosecute
the matter and several court applications to have it prosecuted had been
Mr Chagonda described the prosecution as "malicious and vindictive" and an
attempt to deprive the two of their majority shareholding in the mining
He notified the court of his clients' intention to challenge being further
remanded on October 12.
Prosecutor Ms Tendai Chiduwa alleges that in 2004 businessman Jameson
Rushwaya and his wife Annie saw an advertisement in the local Press for the
sale of Glencairn Mine.
Glencairn, which was at that time owned by Collen Rose and Sarah Hayle, was
registered under Tolrose Investments.
The Rushwayas were interested in purchasing the company and allegedly sought
funding from the Timba brothers.
It is the State's case that the Timbas advised them to apply for a loan from
As per agreement, the couple and the Timba brothers allegedly formed a
company called Aeprom Resources (Private) Limited and restructured
According to the new company, Swimming Pool and Underwater Repairs got 6 150
shares, One Way Ministries Church 1 000 shares, Tongesai Kapondo 499 shares,
Jameson Rushwaya 2 348 shares and his wife a single share, the court was
It is alleged Aeprom Resources got Z$3,480 trillion from Stanbic Bank with
Jameson Rushwaya offering his Bulawayo house.
One of the Timba brothers offered a Harare flat, the prosecution says.
The money was used to buy Glencairn Mine from Rose and Hayle in November
On February 23, 2005 Rose and Hayle resigned from Tolrose Investments and
the Rushwayas took over as directors.
When Aeprom failed to repay the Stanbic loan, it is alleged Patterson Timba
cleared it, but the firm's operations continued under the Rushwayas
directorship until March 2010.
It is the State's contention that this year, the Timba brothers and Sabtenia
Jakaza, Margaret Ditima, Tongesai Kapondo and Samuel Mazowe - who were all
at large - plotted to oust the directors.
They allegedly originated a fraudulent CR14 form for Tolrose Investments
dated March 31 imposing themselves as additional directors.
The two are also accused of appointing Mazowe as secretary before sending
the document to the Registrar of Companies, the State alleges.
It is the State's case that the Timbas submitted the document with the full
knowledge that it was fraudulent.
By Sidney Saize
Wednesday, 29 September 2010 16:57
MUTARE - The Zanu PF deputy secretary for information and publicity in
Manicaland province Charles Samuriwo on Tuesday said Zimbabwe would go ahead
with elections come 2011 despite numerous reported cases of violence in some
parts of the country.
He said if volatile countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine could
hold elections, Zimbabwe was no exception.
Samuriwo was presenting his party's position paper on public meeting
organised by the Mass Public Opinion Institute on the question; "Is Zimbabwe
ready to hold credible elections come 2011?"
Samuriwo, admitted that there was political violence in Zimbabwe and said
non-governmental organisations which are calling for the delay in holding
presidential and parliamentary elections next year on the pretext of
political violence and poor performance of the economy, were being naive in
their argument as the poorest of countries were holding the elections.
He said such excuses would in future create dictators who would refrain from
holding elections claiming that the country's coffers are dry and that there
"If we fail to hold those elections next year, are we not creating a
platform in which dictators can then determine that because we do not have
funds, we cannot have elections," said Samuriwo.
"Is that implying that poor nations are not supposed to have elections, poor
nations are not supposed to have democracy if funds are the requirement to
have elections. Is democracy a preserve of rich nations?" he asked.
He said the Zimbabweans should not let the prevalence of violence determine
whether to or not to hold elections since some countries with "more"
violence had managed to hold elections.
"Are we prepared to let violence determine when we can hold or not hold
elections? If violence determines when we can and cannot hold elections, why
did we have elections in Iraq, why did we have elections in Afghanistan, why
did we have elections in Palestine.
He said South Africa is a "beacon of greater violence than us" but they held
elections that were said to be credible.
Samuriwo added that Zimbabweans cannot be bound by the dictates of the three
political parties in the inclusive government - Zanu PF and the two
formations of MDC - since other political parties such as Zapu,
Mavambo-Kusile-Dawn should have a say on the issue of elections.
"In any case is Zimbabwe bound by the dictates of three political parties,
are these three political parties Zimbabwe and is Zimbabwe those three
political parties? Are we also setting a precedent where only three
political parties flout the constitution?"
Civic organisations had categorically stated that Zimbabwe was unfit to hold
the elections next year given the orgy of violence that is being reported in
some parts of the country.
Sondon Mugaradziko who is chairperson for the smaller faction of the MDC in
Manicaland province concurred with the civic groups adding that some reforms
needed to be fulfilled before the country goes for another election.
"We need to address the issue of political violence, political and media
reforms before we can meaningfully hold a credible election," said
Mugaradziko.-T, Pishai Muchauraya said his party was ready to stand any
election any time.
"As MDC-T our position is clear. We will stand in each coming election
whatever it takes. We need real change to move to another chapter in the
history of the country," said Muchauraya.
Moses Semwayo, an academic said based in Mutare said Zimbabwe was not ready
for any elections until key issues to do with the economy and violence are
"At the moment Zimbabwe is not ready to hold any free and fair election
because the economy has not picked well enough and some victims of past
political violence associated with elections are yet to heal," Semwayo said.
Cases of political violence have been on the increase especially during the
COPAC outreach programmes leading to some outreach work being suspended in
Harare and other parts of the country.
by Own Correspondent Wednesday 29 September 2010
JOHANNESBURG - A coalition of Zimbabwean civil society groups on Tuesday
said it had recorded more than 2 300 cases of human rights violations during
public hearings on a new constitution last month alone -- casting further
doubt on the credibility of the reforms.
The coalition monitoring constitutional reforms and known by the acronym,
ZZZICOMP, said abuses that include assault, intimidation, suppression of the
freedoms of speech and expression among others totaled 2 359 in the month of
August, a rise of more than 50 percent on the 1 555 incidents recorded in
The ZZZICOMP brings together three of Zimbabwe's top pro-democracy groups -
the Zimbabwe Election Support Network, Zimbabwe Peace Project and Zimbabwe
Lawyers for Human Rights - in a joint-effort to monitor constitutional
reforms and evaluate whether they were democratic and the outcome a true
reflection of the people's wishes.
"The month under review recorded an outreach violation toll of 2359 .. an
increase from the 1555 that were recorded in July," the ZZZICOMP said in its
latest report on constitutional reforms.
"Verbal threats, intimidation, coaching, assaults, presence of state
security agents at outreach meetings, perceptions that recording equipment
will be used to identify individuals making contributions, among others
continue to restrict citizen voice at outreach meetings," it said.
The group spoke as Human Rights Watch (HRW) warned against rising attacks by
supporters of President Robert Mugabe who have targeted people who speak
against the views of the veteran leader's ZANU PF party during the
constitutional outreach meetings.
The New York-based group's Africa director Rona Peligal called on the
government to act to halt the attacks, saying failure to punish perpetrators
of political violence and human rights abuses now will lead to worse
violence during a constitutional referendum and general elections expected
Peligal said: "This violence and intimidation do not bode well for the
referendum and elections that could be held next year. Without rights
reforms and accountability for continuing abuses, the kind of violence that
plagued the 2008 elections is likely to happen again."
Zimbabwe is writing a new constitution as part of reforms agreed by Mugabe,
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara
to strengthen democracy in the country.
But the exercise to gather public views to be put in the constitution has
been marred by reports of violence and widespread intimidation blamed on
ZANU PF supporters wanting to pressure Zimbabweans to support a new
constitution that will not bar Mugabe from standing for re-election, while
banning the post of Prime Minister.
Public hearings had to be called off in Harare and the nearby dormitory town
of Chitungwiza after violence broke out during meetings more than a week ago
leaving at least one person dead and scores of others injured.
Tsvangirai on Monday told a meeting in Harare that the public hearings that
should have allowed ordinary Zimbabweans to dictate the content of the new
constitution have been reduced to a mere contest between the political
As a result the three ruling parties - and not citizens - will now have to
decide through negotiations what to put in the new constitution.
Under the power-sharing pact, Zimbabweans will go to elections after a
referendum, which is expected next year but there are doubts the vote will
take place because the constitutional reform exercise is about a year behind
schedule. - ZimOnline.
September 29 2010 at 01:16am
By Kenichi Serino
Johannesburg - A woman collapsed when Zimbabweans lining up to claim amnesty
at the regional Home Affairs office in Johannesburg on Tuesday were sprayed
with an unknown substance by a police officer.
This happened at around 3pm when chaos broke out amongst the several hundred
Zimbabweans queuing at the office in Harrison Street in the Johannesburg
A witness inside the building saw the spraying take place.
“One in a blue SAPS uniform had a can and was spraying a substance that was
like a projectile,” said Tendayi Achiume.
Achiume witnessed the spraying from a window on the other floor. As the
police officer sprayed most of the crowd fled, but several stood their
ground and refused to leave the entrance.
“It seems they were desperate. They wanted to get inside. There was
definitely chaos. There was no order,” said Achiume.
Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Xoli Mbele confirmed that the police had
been called in when the crowd of Zimbabweans became disorderly.
“They were fighting amongst themselves so no one was arrested and no case
was opened,” said Mbele.
However, he could not say whether police had used pepper spray.
“I don't have that information whether they used the pepper spray. The
information I have is that the police attempted to calm the situation,” said
The Department of Home Affairs could not immediately be reached for comment.
Hundreds of Zimbabweans were taking advantage of an amnesty which would
allow them to trade in their fraudulently obtained South African identity
documents for valid permits, provided they could supply a valid Zimbabwean
passport. - Sapa
Written by John Makumbe
Monday, 27 September 2010 16:35
There is no way that realistic democrats can sit together with hard core
dictators and successfully forge a democratic constitution.
Desperate to ensure that the next elections will be conducted under the
current Lancaster House Constitution, Zanu (PF) bussed hundreds of rural
folk into Harare to disrupt Copac outreach meetings last week-end. The
situation at Mai Musodzi Hall in Mbare was so violent that even Paul
Mangwana, the Zanu (PF) co-chairman of Copac had to be escorted away from
the venue in fear of his life.
Mangwana was obviously aware that his political party was organising the
disruption of selected Copac meetings, but he was powerless to protect
himself from the actions of the hoodlums. The whole nation is now aware that
it is only Zanu (PF) that is resorting to violence in a futile attempt to
foist the ridiculous Kariba draft onto the nation as it foundation law.
Senior members of that fading political party can deny this allegation all
they want, but the facts speak for themselves.
Civil society reports on the outreach meetings held throughout the country
indicate that Zanu (PF) is responsible for more than 90% of all the violent
acts and disruptions of the Copac meetings.
As usual, the police on duty at Mai Musodzi Hall would not lift a finger to
stop the violence or to bring the perpetrators of the violence to book. They
obviously had been duly instructed by their Commissioner-General, Augustine
Chihuri, not to arrest these culprits since they are supporters of his
political party. History will, one day, judge people like Chihuri and his
ilk very harshly. Fortunately, numerous outreach meetings were successfully
conducted in both Bulawayo and Harare, to the extent that the people's views
were expressed and recorded. Copac has committed itself to re-visit the
venues that had their meetings disrupted in order to accord the innocent
citizens an opportunity to air their views.
The Zanu (PF) hoodlums need to be told that their disruptive actions will
never succeed in thwarting the will of the people of this country. It must
be embarrassing to some of the senior people in the outgoing ruling party
for their political party to be associated with the kind of actions that the
nation witnessed at Mai Musodzi Hall.
Zimbabweans have been aware that the political environment has not yet
become conducive for the proper conduct of constitutional outreach meetings.
People and organisations that have been opposed to the Copac process are now
gloating and rightly saying, "We told you so." But the truth of the matter
is that Copac successfully held outreach meetings in something like
three-quarters of this country, and the people's views were successfully
gathered and recorded. It is from these views that a new, democratic and
people-driven constitution will be drafted. This nation needs to cross that
bridge in order to proceed to a referendum and new elections in 2011. The
few people that are currently arguing for the postponement of elections
until 2015 must realise that they will simply be giving Zanu (PF) and the
merchants of violence ample time to re-group, organise and unleash worse
violence when the elections are held in that year.
It is obvious that the final outcome of the Copac process is going to be a
compromise constitution. There is no way that realistic democrats can sit
together with hard core dictators and successfully forge a democratic
constitution. What we as a nation must hope for is that the forthcoming
elections will result in the emergence of a government of the people's
choice. It is that government that will accord the nation an opportunity to
re-write the constitution and make it truly democratic. For the time being,
and as a means to facilitate effective regime change, we need to stay the
course and write that constitution. Long live Zimbabwe.
By ANGUS SHAW (AP) - 6 hours ago
HARARE, Zimbabwe - The two North Korean-made statues were meant to honor a
national hero but people were so offended because of Pyongyang's links to a
blood-soaked chapter of Zimbabwe's history that one was taken down almost
immediately and the other has not been erected.
Besides, at least one of them didn't even resemble Joshua Nkomo, a former
guerrilla leader known as "Father Zimbabwe" who died in 1999 at the age of
That the statues were designed and made by North Koreans is an affront to
Zimbabweans who blame North Korean-trained troops loyal to President Robert
Mugabe for massacring thousands of civilians as the government tried to
crush an uprising led by Nkomo in the 1980s. The uprising ended when Nkomo
signed a unity pact in 1987 and became a vice president.
No offense was intended by the choice of North Korea to make the statues,
Godfrey Mahachi, head of the state National Museums and Monuments, told The
Associated Press. He said North Korea was chosen simply because it won the
bid for the work, promising favorable prices.
One of the Nkomo statues was erected briefly last month in Bulawayo,
Zimbabwe's second-biggest city, on the site where a statue of British
colonial era leader Cecil John Rhodes once stood. Nkomo's family called his
statue artistically "ineffectual."
While there were no organized protests, criticisms were widespread before
the unveiling. Nkomo's relatives were quoted in newspapers complaining that
they had not been consulted. Simon Dube, a Bulawayo businessman, said the
Nkomo statue was shrouded under a black cloth under police guard. Dube, who
glimpsed it, said the statue's head was too small for Nkomo's famously heavy
and imposing build.
Organizers kept the police on hand during the unveiling ceremony and took
the statue down within hours.
The other statue was to have been placed in the capital, Harare, outside an
office tower known as Karigamombe, which in the local Shona language means
"taking the bull by the horns and slaying it." Some saw that as adding
insult to injury: the symbol of Nkomo's Zimbabwe African People's Union
party and his former guerrilla army was a rampaging bull.
Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi said that despite the kerfuffle, the
North Koreans have been paid their $600,000 for the two statues, state media
Mahachi said officials are considering where else to put the two 3-meter (10
"We still have to look at different options. They might go to museums, but
that will be discussed to reach a final decision," he said.
The Bulawayo statue is for the time being kept at the Bulawayo Natural
History Museum, where the deposed statue of Rhodes is also kept.
Nkomo spent his adult life fighting colonialism and was also imprisoned for
a decade for his political activism against white rule in Rhodesia, as
Zimbabwe was previously called. "Father Zimbabwe" spearheaded black
nationalist resistance to white rule well before Mugabe came on the scene.
Nkomo's image has appeared on postage stamps and the Bulawayo international
airport has been named after him.
|Written by BRIAN MACGARRY|
|Monday, 27 September 2010 17:07|
|The year 2009 began with Z$ inflation running at about
10,000%/month; i.e. currency adding 24 zeroes in a year. The ten zeroes lopped
off in August 2008 were back and pressure to change to using the US$ increased
from all sides. More employers were paying wages in US$, which were also
accepted in payment of taxes, utility bills and in most shops. Mid-January saw
the introduction of a trillion dollar note (12 zeroes) and 100% inflation in a
day. A last-ditch effort, in February, to preserve a 'new' zimdollar' with the
12 zeroes lopped off, failed and reality was officially recognised. All payments
could be made in any of five foreign currencies: rand, pula, pound, Euro and US
dollar, with the US$ as the reference currency (i.e. when the rand rose against
the dollar, Harare prices in rands dropped). In Harare, effectively only dollars
and rands are used, but more people accept pulas in Bulawayo.|
This ended hyperinflation overnight. We saw 'negative inflation' for most of the year. By December, the annual inflation rate was -7.7%. Table 1 compares wage data (from LEDRIZ) with cost of living figures (inflation, poverty datum line [PDL and food poverty line [FPL]. These figures are only rough approximations, the PDL being based on calculations of basic needs per head without allowing that different people have different needs, varying most notably with with age and gender and the 'average minimum wage' is a very rough approximation. PDL figures from the Consumer Council for November and December 2009 are included to illustrate this point. Nonetheless, we can safely say the purchasing power of an average minimum wage at least doubled over the year 2009, due to a combination of wage increases and price decreases.
Wage and cost of living comparisons.
But the only available figures since then look distinctly funny. LEDRIZ has some figures for the period up to May2010, which is no further behind than these statistics usually are, but I have to assume that their sudden jump in the average minimum wage to $410 is in fact a mistake for $140. This does not mean that the minimum wage has dropped. It may just mean they decided they cannot calculate the average minimum wage and more accurately than this. That means they are saying we can be sure it is between $135.01 and $145.00 but we can't be more exact than that. This is a reasonable thing to say, because an 'average minimum wage' is a very slippery concept. Since nobody knows how many workers are formally employed, it is easier to take the average of the known minimum wage for each sector of the economy. If each sector employed the same number of workers, this would give the same answer as taking an average of the wages of every worker. They are not all equal, so so the average minimum given here is not exact. We do not know how many workers there are in formal employment, so we cannot calculate the correct figure. What you have here is the best we've got.
Having said that, I take the liberty of using the November and December figure from the table above as the minimum wage up to May. This does state one truth: the average minimum wages in industry have not changed significantly since last November. They haven't increased noticeably (certainly not to $410, a 188% increase) and they didn't suddenly drop by $2.46 (1.7%) in January. Then the table above continues like this:
and since this has the virtue of matching our memory of what has happened to the money in our pockets since last January. This extended table says that in April we had slipped back to where we were late in June 2009. We will probably agree that we were slipping back. We have no better measure of how far or how fast we were slipping, so this is at least an expression of how we feel things were going.
There is another problem with the figures. Between January and February 2009 it is difficult to get continuity between figures in the incredible vanishing zimdollar and those in real money, whether you use US$, rand, pula or renminbi yuan. The change brought some sense back into the system. Our wages could buy something again. Beyond that, the figures are not clear. Could prices drop by 36% and wages rise by 47% when we simply translated both from Z$ to US$? That is one of the mysteries of hyperinflation economics I don't understand. Nor, I suspect, does anyone else.
What we do know is that we could once again plan how to spend our money. Our family budget made sense and that was an improvement. Let's just say we suddenly becameap better off; whether by 50% or 100% doesn't matter or mean much.
A very dubious figure in the table above is the "Food Poverty Line". Now, it should be possible to calculate the cost of feeding a family the minimum needed for survival: that would be a "Food Poverty Line". Unfortunately, the CSO don't think that way. They si,mply choose to call food costs 36.8% of the total "Poverty Datum Line". We know this is nonsense, because we know the poor spend more of their income on food than the rich do. CSO used to know this: in the pre-1980 European Consumer Price Index, food accounted for about 20% of the expenditure that made up the Consumer Price Index(CPI), while food accounted for about 55% the African CPI. This distinction was kept, with slightly different figures, in the "upper income" and "lower income" CPI calculations used until ESAP dictated that we should not be interested in distribution of the nation's wealth or expenditure, just in its overall size. But we are interested in the distribution, unless we get such a big share that we never feel hungry.
How did we survive?
"How did we survive the years of economic depression and hyperinflation?" The International Fund for Agricultural Development, a UN agency dedicated to eradicating rural poverty, estimated that $361 million came into Zimbabwe as remittances in 2008 and this could easily double in 2009. Eddie Cross reckoned the total might be a billion, which is far more than anyone had expected. If this much was coming as remittances, it would explain how people survived. Otherwise, we'd have expected to see more people die of hunger and disease than actually did in these recent years. Maybe. Or maybe more did die than we heard about. Population figures have been unreliable at least since the results of the 2002 census were quietly stuffed away in a dusty closet and forgotten. That census gave the population of Zimbabwe in August 2002 as 11.3 million. This was about what we should have expected from the 1997 intercensal survey which showed that the population growth rate, which had dropped from 1982 to 1992, was still dropping, as we would expect with HIV?AIDS still spreading. In fact Timothy Stamps, then Minister of Health, stated about the end of 2001 that birth and death rates had equalised. Allowing that the flood of emigration had already started, this meant that the population was already decreasing in 2002. We have no evidence of any change in those trends, so it is hard to claim realistically that we now have more than 10 million people living in the country.
Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, Political Analyst, London, UK.
29 September, 2010
Before the EU lifts targeted smart sanctions on Mugabe and his inner circle,
they should note that the whole of Zimbabwe is a giant crime scene based on
what happened before and after the 2008 elections as well as what is
happening on the ground now. Until a full 'forensic' investigation is
carried out into electoral violence, political murders and human rights
abuses in the country leading to the prosecution and conviction of the
culprits, targeted sanctions must stay.
What are the EU sanctions against Zimbabwe? The EU sanctions ban the sale
"of arms and of equipment that can be used for internal repression," prevent
Mugabe and his allies from "entering or transiting the EU member states and
impose an asset freeze on people and firms suspected of supporting the
regime, a European Union statement was quoted as saying (Timeslive,
15/02/10). The sanctions are supposed to remain in effect until February 20,
2011 (on the eve of Mugabe's 87th birthday!!).
Why where they imposed? The restrictive measures were imposed in 2002 in
reaction to allegations of electoral rigging and human rights abuses by
Robert Mugabe's regime. Jacob Zuma's South African government has declined
to release a report of the role of the Zimbabwe military in the 2008
election violence (SW Radio Africa, 26/03/10). Also of concern is the claim
by the Democratic Alliance that South Africa gave a total of R600 million
rand in "economic assistance" to Robert Mugabe's regime under the African
Renaissance Fund (ARF) even though the ARF "does not track how the funding
is spent" (The DA Newsroom, 05/08/10).
One of the reasons why some people feel the measures should stay is the
alleged revelation by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor, Gideon Gono in
a huge advert in 2009 that he had spent US$18 million destined for accounts
belonging to tobacco growers (Times - SA, 29/04/09). In the absence of a
Freedom of Information Act in Zimbabwe, it is unlikely that the full extent
of the raids on foreign currency accounts by the Mugabe regime and their use
will ever be audited transparently. However, the cash strapped government
was said to be paying back the farmers with fertiliser! Other reasons for
supporting targeted sanctions are alleged rights abuses.
According to Human Rights Watch (HRW), there were human rights abuses by the
Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the Airforce of Zimbabwe in the Marange diamond
fields including extra judicial killings, beatings, torture, forced labour,
and child labour during the period October 2008-June 2009. "The first three
weeks of the operation were particularly brutal over the period October 27
to November 16, 2008 the army killed at least 214 miners. The army has also
been engaged fully and openly in the smuggling of diamonds, thereby
perpetuating the very crime it was deployed to prevent," the HRW said
("Diamonds in the Rough", 26/06/09).
On Monday, October 27, 2008 elements of the ZNA, AFZ and CIO agents
reportedly launched Operation Hakudzokwi (No Return) in Marange District.
The report goes on to disclose that there were massacres in Chiadzwa during
the period October 27 to November 16, 2008. "Five military helicopters with
mounted automatic rifles flew over Chiadzwa and began driving out local
miners. On the ground, over 800 soldiers were ferried to Chiadzwa in seven
large trucks, several smaller trucks, and an army bus. From the helicopters,
soldiers indiscriminately fired live ammunition and tear gas into the
diamond fields and into surrounding villages," says the human rights
Prospects of any criminal investigations in to the alleged human rights
abuses have dwindled with Mugabe's recent declaration that there would be no
trials. Furthermore, it has been alleged that economic inducements and
threats of physical harm have kept Zimbabwe's judiciary "beholden" to Robert
Mugabe with the new coalition doing nothing to re-establish the integrity of
the compromised bench, according to "A place in the sun: A report on the
state of the rule of law in Zimbabwe after the Global Political Agreement"
24 Oct - 4 Nov 2009.
Unimpressed by the failure of the coalition government to prosecute
perpetrators of violence, in January, HRW slammed Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai's MDC party for shielding abuses by Zanu-pf "in the name of
trying to save Zimbabwe's coalition regime (Zimonline, 26/01/10). But that
did not stop MDC from promising amnesty to Mugabe and senior army officers
"implicated in atrocities if they voluntarily vacate office" according to
press reports quoting the party's Secretary General Tendai Biti (Zimonline,
Have the sanctions been effective? Who are they hurting if at all, and how?
It is the contention of this opinion paper that the smart sanctions, though
not perfect, have worked and are working, therefore should be retained and
only reviewed when they expire on 20th February 2011. In view of the fact
that in July, the EU invited sanctioned Zimbabweans to make individual cases
for delisting (Zimbabwe Metro, 29/07/10), it is very worrying to note that
the same EU is reportedly "ready to take a fresh look at sanctions against
Zimbabwe" (Zimbabwe Metro, 29/09/10). The EU should not flip flop on this
crucial issue. The German Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Albrecht Conze recently
made a pertinent observation saying: "For the past three years those that
have put restrictive measures on about 200 people in this country regarding
travel and assets have helped this country with between 600 and 800 hundred
million dollars per year. I fail to understand how travel restrictions and
restrictions on personal assets for a small number of people can be
considered a threat to the economic revival of this country."
However, the South African based, Institute for Security Studies argued in a
report in June that the targeted sanctions "are not smart enough" saying,
"targeted individuals can therefore easily find ways to circumvent the ban -
either by travelling to (and shopping in) countries that have not imposed
such restrictions or by attending international conferences or humanitarian
events while at the same time pursuing their private interests in whichever
countries they visit," ("Zimbabwe: are targeted sanctions smart enough?"
On the contrary, evidence that the sanctions are working is documented in
Mugabe's endless mourning and whingeing about "illegal sanctions"at almost
every forum including funerals at heroes acre and conferences he attended at
SADC, EU, UN and he has not been short of sympathisers. South Africa's Thabo
Mbeki and Jacob Zuma as well as Malawi's Bingu WaMutharika have all lined up
to call for the lifting of the "illegal sanctions" which we are being made
to believe are ineffective. Isn't that a contradiction?
It's said that a week is a very long period in politics. A snapshot of
Zimbabwean events in one week paints a gloomy picture of the so-called
progress that should be rewarded as long as someone is honest with facts,
"2300 rights abuses during constitutional reforms" (Zimonline, 29/09/10);
"Parties must negotiate new charter: PM" (because of Zanu-pf violence at
COPAC meetings) (Zimonline, 28/09/10); "Security forces violating rights -
NGO" (Zimbabwe Peace Project) (Zimonline, 28/09/10); "Military intimidating
civilians: Tsvangirai" (Zimonline, 23/09/10); "Victims of violence arrested:
MDC" (Zimonline, 22/09/10); "Zim halts reform exercise in Harare" (because
of violence) Zimonline, 21/09/10); "Tsvangirai hints at poll boycott"
(should resurgent political violence deteriorate and the polls are virtually
reduced to warfare) (Zimonline, 21/09/10) and "Zimbabwe flogs 400 000 carats
at secret auction", (Zimonline, 16/09/10); "Mugabe abuses cover up will be
rejected: Analysts" (Zimonline, 15/09/10); "Memorial for murdered activist
postponed," SW Radio Africa, 28/09/10).
The EU needs to realise that the ordinary people in Zimbabwe are anxiously
waiting for justice and it is therefore not surprising to note that eighteen
Zimbabweans including a five year old boy, who were arrested on trumped-up
charges of terrorism in 2008 have reportedly brought an exemplary lawsuit of
US$22 million against Robert Gabriel Mugabe's government, (Zimdiaspora,
"Demands for justice: Mugabe sued by victims for US$22 million," 31/08/10).
Where in the EU is that happening?
Before sanctions were enforced, it's alleged, Mugabe planned to buy his wife
a Scottish castle and that when in London, Grace Mugabe would insist on
taking over a suite at the exclusive Claridge's Hotel and that on one of her
shopping sprees spent £40,000 in an afternoon (Claire Donnelly, Daily
Mirror, UK 26/06/03). By lifting targeted sanctions without real change, who
will be the EU sacrificing for Mugabe's and his wife's shopping trips
If you assume that there's no hope, you guarantee that there will be no hope. If you assume that there is an instinct for freedom that there are opportunities to change things, there's a chance you may contribute to making a better world. That's your choice.
- Noam Chomsky
Making the world a better place . . .
The all-volunteer facial reconstructive surgical team, Operation of Hope, will be in Zimbabwe during October to perform 50 surgeries for children suffering from facial deformities.
Change lives today and make miracles happen! Our doors are always open! Please visit our website or give us a call: +1 949 463-1795 or visit www.operationofhope.org
For the finest creations of artistic intellect in Shona sculpture please visit Mvurwi Arts Centre.
- More than 200 genuine pieces for your selection advantage
- Five star lodge within 300 metres from the centre
- Latest creations in soapstone and opal
- Very friendly artists
Centre opposite Bindura Haulage, Independence Way, Mvurwi
Phone Benjamin for directions: 0912 904 927 or email email@example.com
Article VII: Voices for Healing
This DVD produced by ZimRights “brings to life the dirt that has been swept under the rug” in Zimbabwe and discusses politically motivated violence. After watching a Rooftop Productions play called “Heal the Wounds”, ZimRights took it to the communities. Through the testimonies of the people who viewed the play, it emerged that giving survivors the opportunity to speak out is a deep relief to them. In collaboration with ZimRights Kubatana has fifty (50) Voices for Healing DVDs to share with our membership. If you would like us to post you a copy please send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Action! When you receive the DVD we ask that you screen it with friends and colleagues and start discussion groups on ways in which we can build peace in Zimbabwe. We always welcome feedback so . . . please email us with your feedback on the film and how you shared it with others.
Email of the week . . .
The refuse at my factory in New Ardbennie has been collected 3 times since February 2009. I deduct the refuse amount from my bill every month and pay the balance. However the water people come every month to cut off my water and after showing them that I do pay the water and that the only amount missing off my bill is the refuse they go away. I get numerous letters threatening to take me to court. I have written to numerous people including the Manager of waste Management with NO success. I was so fed up with this treatment so made an appointment to see the councillor of my area and met him at town house. He was very pleasant and saw my point. He then took me up stairs to see someone and this very well dressed man came out of a meeting to see me and was extremely rude. He told me that the law in Zimbabwe stated that no matter whether you received a service or not by law you have to pay. He said that this was a written down law and that I was breaking it and MUST pay. He said that it was written down this way so that if the council was experiencing difficulties then they had money to fall back on. This I find very distressing as why must I be responsible for a council that DOES NOT carry out their duties. I may as well just take the money and throw it out a window as this is all it is worth. Does a person go into the supermarket buy a trolley full of groceries pay for it and then leave it behind? This is what City of Harare is asking me to do. Because of my refusal to pay my refuse bill I have a large $ figure outstanding on my bill as I have NOT paid since February 2009. As I explained to the Manager of Waste Management in a letter that the first month that I can record that my refuse has been collected every week I will start to pay my monthly bill. This amount is $138 (R1000), which I am sure you will agree is VERY large amount of money for refuse collection. I personally have to take care of the rubbish at my factory. – Kubatana subscriber
Please email us your positive and negative experiences of service delivery in Zimbabwe. email@example.com and your suggestions about ways in which we can Wake Up city officials!
What’s new on Kubatana blogs
The life and death of the amazing Dr Monica Glenshaw . . . people are doing it for themselves and cleaning up the sunshine city . . . urban accommodation woes . . .
mixed opinion on the issue of pregnant school girls . . .