ZANU PF’s top decision making body the Politburo met on Thursday
amid worsening tensions within Robert Mugabe’s party.
line is that the Politburo meeting, which was attended by Mugabe, would
focus on the party’s election campaign strategy and the
But it is understood the meeting was also called to try
and diffuse the building tensions within the party, tensions that some
analysts say have left ZANU PF ‘weakened’.
Infighting, which ZANU PF
repeatedly denies, has continued to intensify in recent months, as the
battle over who will lead the party after Mugabe hots up.
recent development has been the drafting of a petition by some top officials
in the party, who are asking Mugabe to rein in ZANU PF secretary for
administration Didymus Mutasa. Officials from Manicaland accused Mutasa of
causing divisions in the party and have warned that if his behaviour goes
unchecked, the party would be ‘doomed’ come election time.
those believed to have attended last Friday’s meeting are Justice minister
Patrick Chinamasa, Deputy Minister of Energy Hubert Nyanhongo, suspended
provincial chairperson Mike Madiro, acting provincial chair Dorothy Mabika,
Buhera North MP William Mutomba, war vets leader Joseph Chinotimba and ZANU
PF Women’s League leader Oppah Muchinguri.
The NewsDay newspaper reported
that most of the petitioners allegedly belong to a ZANU PF faction led by
Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, which has been fighting a rival faction
led by Vice-President Joice Mujuru for years.
By the end of Thursday
there was no word of what transpired at the Politburo meeting.
political analyst Pedzisai Ruhanya told SW Radio Africa that ZANU PF is in a
weakened state. He blamed the party’s disunity on Mugabe’s continued
leadership, and his failure to once and for all pick a
“There are different people in ZANU PF who see this as an
opportunity to take over, and there is no unity about what happens when
Mugabe is gone. So ZANU PF is in a difficult position,” Ruhanya
He added that this was a prime opportunity for “progressive,
democratic forces” to unite and ensure real democratic change in
“If the MDC factions, the other political players, the civil
society groups, the youth, everyone who wants democracy came together to
launch a concerted attack on the political hegemony of ZANU PF, it will
weaken its stronghold on power,” Ruhanya said.
He continued that the
onus was now on the MDC factions, particularly the MDC-T, to “put aside
their party parochial issues and challenge all democratic forces to unite
and bring about democracy.”
Tourism Minister Walter Mzembi is appealing for
urgent financial assistance from across Africa in a bid to ensure the
successful hosting of the United Nations (UN) tourism conference in
The UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) General Assembly is set
to be co hosted by Zimbabwe and Zambia in Victoria Falls, but Zimbabwe’s
preparations have been dogged by serious issues. Mzembi has reportedly been
at loggerheads with the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive
Karikoga Kaseke over fundraising and logistical issues. The main issue
however has been a critical lack of money.
Minister Mzembi has
budgeted almost $12 million for the event, which is meant to include an over
hall of the facilities in Victoria Falls and at the airport there. In
February, there were assurances from the Finance Ministry that more than $6
million would be availed, but this has not happened.
The Mbada Mining
firm also pledged more than $2 million for the event, but so far only $600,
000 has been released. The payment of the ‘donation’ was also briefly
suspended amid accusations that the money was being diverted. It is
understood that the issue has now been cleared up and the money will be
But the multimillion dollar shortfall for the meeting is
understood to have left Mzembi panicking and he is said to be “frantically”
searching for help from different countries, including neighbouring South
According to that country’s Mail & Guardian, Mzembi was due
to travel to South Africa last week to look for funds to host the event.
Mzembi was expected to fly to Pretoria to meet with his counterpart,
Marthinus van Schalkwyk, “to discuss how South Africa could help financially
and via other means,” said an official involved in the
“He has been frantically running around to ensure the
success of the conference, which is a major investment opportunity and
chance for Zimbabwe to show it has been rehabilitated from international
isolation,” the official was quoted by the Mail & Guardian as
Mzembi said he could “not discuss the country’s shopping list in
the media”, but confirmed that Zimbabwe was seeking “capacity-building”
assistance from its neighbour.
Three members from
the National Youth Development Trust (NYDT) in Bulawayo, who were arrested
on Wednesday over a voter mobilisation exercise, were released on the same
day without charge.
Garikai Mhendo, Lucky Mutiti, and a third member
identified only as Mayibongwe, were released Wednesday evening, after
spending the whole day being interrogated by officers at Pumula Police
It is understood that the police quizzed the trio over their
motives for conducting the voter awareness exercise.
who heads the NYDT, told SW Radio Africa from Washington that his colleagues
were arrested on allegations that they were buying Econet mobile phone lines
for youths to enable them to register.
However, no evidence of this was
found forcing the police to release the three who were represented by
Bulawayo lawyer Nontokozo Dube-Tachiwona.
“As a youth organisation most
of our members are young people who do not own homes or properties. As a
result, providing proof of address is difficult for them especially when
they have to register as voters,” Bhebhe said.
Concerned that this was
affecting eligible residents’ participation in electoral processes, the NYDT
devised a plan which involves using sim-card certificates issued by mobile
phone network Econet, which contain acceptable proof of residence.
was during the process of encouraging residents to use these certificates to
register that Mhendo, Mutiti, and Mayibongwe were arrested outside Pumula
The housing office doubles up as the
Registrar-General’s office where residents from Pumula and the surrounding
residential suburbs can register to vote.
As reported by SW Radio
Africa Wednesday, a lot of tenants in the suburb are lodgers (a scheme where
landlords sublet rooms to tenants) and therefore face problems getting the
letters confirming their tenant-status from landlords.
This is not
the first time that the NYDT has been targeted by the police over its voter
and civic education efforts.
In February, heavily armed officers raided
the organisation’s offices looking for ‘illegal voter registration
certificates’. This was in response to a nationwide campaign by the Trust,
which was encouraging youths to register to vote in the March constitutional
referendum and the forthcoming national polls.
However the officers
went away empty-handed, with a threat to return at a later date: “We suspect
the police were just after frustrating our work and these latest arrests are
meant to intimidate and harass us.
“There is nothing illegal in
encouraging and educating citizens, particularly young people, about their
voting rights ahead of a crucial general election,” Bhebhe said.
WASHINGTON — The Zimbabwe Youth Agenda Trust says it
is concerned about the limited access and assistance of local registrar’s
offices for youth to register to vote.
The Trust is conducting
several campaigns on youth and elections across the country under the banner
“It’s Our Time Now,” saying government has not provided young people enough
access to participate in the electoral process.
The Trust said in areas
like Tsholotsho, Matabeleland North, there are only two voter registration
centers, and area residents have to pay excessive travel fees and often find
themselves turned away by officials for lack of documents.
program called Play Your Vote, a sports tournament recently held in the
area, the Tsholotsho youth leader Challenge Ndlovu said youth complained of
lack of employment opportunities or income generating activities leaving
without funds to travel to registration centers.
Complaints by youth
in rural areas in Matabeleland North and South have been voiced before, but
youth in urban centers like Bulawayo and Harare face similar
Youth Aagenda Trust program officer Lawrence Mashungu told VOA
the organization has continued to push for government to improve the
situation with few results so far.
Common issues affecting youth
include dealing with registration officials.
Many youth said they are
generally turned away from registering due to lack of documents, though they
furnish required documents.
Mashungu said many youth are asked to provide
documents that are required to be taken from national offices.
A visiting state secretary of the Danish Foreign Affairs ministry,
Ib Petersen, has said his country is prepared to fund Zimbabwe’s general
elections, as long as fundamental reforms are put in place before the
Peterson, who is on a two day visit of Zimbabwe, told journalists
on Wednesday that his government would join other donors as partners under
the United Nations (UN).
“We are aware that Zimbabwe approached the
UN for election funding and Denmark would only provide assistance in this
respect under the international body’s UNDP. This will be after the UN has
concluded its assessment of Zimbabwe’s election requirements,” the Danish
A UN fact finding mission is scheduled to visit Zimbabwe
to assess requirements for general elections expected this year, after the
cash-strapped coalition government appealed for assistance to conduct the
polls. However Peterson urged authorities to also make an effort to look for
election funding from the country’s own resources.
important and it would be a shame if they turn out not to be free and fair
due to lack of funding. We also expect the government to provide its share,
but we will, as other partners, listen carefully to assessments conducted by
the United Nations,” added Petersen.
The Danish official met Zimbabwe
Electoral Commission chairperson Rita Makarau, Finance Minister Tendai Biti,
and Joint Monitoring Implementation Committee (JOMIC) officials to assess
the needs of the country ahead of the crucial polls. He was also expected to
meet representatives from the political parties before the end of his two
“As much as we appreciate the need for Zimbabwe to hold
harmonised elections, we also realise that the country would need the new
constitution, new laws and voter education among other requirements before
going to the ballot,” Peterson said.
The State Secretary’s visit is
the highest-ranking visit from a member of the Danish government to Zimbabwe
The Nordic country, which is one of the major bilateral donors
in Zimbabwe, will make available at least $40 million annually for the next
few years to help strengthen diplomatic and commercial ties between the two
Peterson said his country would also focus on supporting good
governance activities, provide assistance in the agricultural sector, help
infrastructure rehabilitation efforts and the refurbishment of some
magistrates courts in the country.
Denmark wants the United Nations to be part of international
election observers in Zimbabwe together with Sadc after Zanu (PF) said the
European Union and the United States are not welcome.
state secretary in the Foreign Affairs ministry, Ib Petersen told the media
after meeting Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai at his Highlands official
residence in Harare today that his country remains supportive of the
democratic process in Zimbabwe.
“I understand there will be international
observers from Sadc and we think that is necessary that the United Nations
is part of the international observers then we can go in and support
financially the holding of the elections,” he said.
Zanu (PF) leaders
in the Government of National Unity including the Vice President Joice
Mujuru have insisted that the EU and the United States will not be invited
to observe the elections.
“We have plans to increase the cooperation
between Denamrk and Zimbabwe but that is based on the expectations that we
see good results as we go along,” Petersen said.
“We have always been
in supportive of the democratic process in Zimbabwe and we would like to
support free and fair elections.
“The Prime Minister was open in
explaining that there are a number of issues that need to be resolved
including the new constitution that has to be adopted by parliament and laws
that need to be implemented. The election commission also has to be able to
do its work,” he said.
Petersen said he had met ministers from the three
parties, MDC-T, MDC-N and Zanu (PF).
“From those discussions it is
clear that there are issues that the parties in government do not agree
“That is normal in any coalition government. Those are political
processes and we respect that. What we look at are the policies that come
out of that and if they are in line with what we can support then we will
continue as a strong partner,” he said.
He said in his discussions
with the Joint Monitoring Implementation Committee all parties have been
clear that they share the vision of a nonviolent election.
will be need put in place mechanisms for monitoring at the local level,” he
Government has pleaded with the European Union to
intervene and help fund the ailing agriculture sector.
today (Wednesday ) at the official launch of European Union support to
Zimbabwe’s agriculture sector, the Permanent Secretary for Ministry of
Agriculture Mechanisation and Irrigation Development, Ngoni Masoka said E.U
should consider increasing more funding for the benefit of small scale
The E.U unveiled a $12 million contribution which will be
delivered from 2013 to 2015 and is aimed at increasing agricultural
productivity and food and nutrition security among the farmers.
funds are being channeled through Food and Agriculture Organisation of the
United Nations, the official German Cooperation, GIZ and a non-governmental
organisation HELP, from Germany.
“We appreciate the funds that you have
extended to the country today but we are appealing for more funding. The
sector is in need of intervention in areas such as irrigation and
mechanisation as they are central to increasing agricultural production,
He said smallholder farmers who constitute about 1, 4
million farming households were facing a number of challenges which included
limited access to working capital, lack of adequate machinery and limited
access to working capital.
The European Union Ambassador, Aldo Dell’
Ariccia said E.U would continue contributing to the agriculture sector so as
to create an enabling environment to improve food and nutrition
“ The EU strongly recognises the importance of the agriculture
sector not only in respect of its contribution to the Gross Domestic Product
but in particular as a source of livelihood for the large majority of the
population in Zimbabwe,” he said.
Present at the launch was the
country Director for HELP from Germany, Christoph Laufens, FAO Emergency and
Rehabilitation Coordinator Zimbabwe, Jean Claude Urvoy and Head of Agency
GIZ Zimbabwe, Winfried Hamacher.
A ROAD contract worth US$200 million won by a joint
venture involving South Africa’s Group Five was formally launched Thursday
with the opening of the Ntabazinduna toll plaza about 20km outside
Bulawayo. The toll gate is the first of eight toll plazas to be constructed
and operated on the main 822km east-to-west route in the country. Seven
other plazas will be constructed and opened over the next 18
The contract forms part of the government’s strategic initiative
to upgrade the logistics networks in the country to support anticipated
growth in the economy.
The east-west route is one of the first roads
to be upgraded and links with Botswana through Plumtree, Bulawayo, Harare
and Mutare on the Mozambican border.
Infralink, a joint venture
between the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) and Group Five,
was formed to implement the road upgrade. Zinara has a 70 percent
shareholding in the joint venture and Group Five the remaining 30
The development loan for the contract was provided by the
Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA). It represents the largest single
loan granted by the bank for a development project in Zimbabwe and the state
lender’s second-biggest outside South Africa.
The funding was
structured as a three-way loan agreement with Zinara, the Ministry of
Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development, and the Finance
Group Five chief executive Mike Upton said it was a prime
example of what could be achieved with public-private partnerships (PPPs)
when government utilities and companies worked together.
and Communications Minister Nicholas Goche said the use of a PPP was in
accordance with the strategy of using tolling to the maximum extent possible
to recoup a part of the substantial investment involved and to alleviate
pressure on the government’s budget to facilitate spending on other
“Instead of using the traditional Government funds
termed first generation money, there has been a move towards second
generation money which comes from user charges in line with user-pay
principle,” he said.
“This approach reduces the burden of road
maintenance on Treasury to other needy critical sectors of the economy,
while society pays for the rehabilitation of the roads depending on
“PPPs as a strategy are speedy, efficient and cost effective in
the delivery of projects, and are extremely suitable to road infrastructure
Goche added that road infrastructure investment was one of the
vital keys to enable Zimbabwe to unlock the economic potential of areas that
were currently hard to access.
He added thatthe development of road
infrastructure promoted national trade and efficient transit traffic flow
between Zimbabwe and neighbouring countries and to the ports.
said Group Five had implemented its own innovative systems and tolling
solutions on the contract while ensuring substantial local Zimbabwe
He said the contract was testimony to the group’s
experience working in Africa, with almost 30 percent of its current order
book comprising work in the rest of the continent.
More than 2 000
people have been employed on the contract to date. The project involved 220
local suppliers and 19 sub-contractors.
Group Five has spent a total of
US$70 million in Zimbabwe since inception of the contract in October 2011
while about US$1.2 million was ring-fenced as part of phase one to benefit a
number of community development projects along the contract route.
The National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) was this
week heavily criticised for its proposal to pay its workers part-salaries
and convert the balance into leave days.
The parastatal owes its more
than 7,000-strong workforce about $1.4 million in unpaid salaries and
allowances, dating back to June 2012.
Now management at the beleaguered
parastatal has come up with a desperate plan to reduce its huge wage
According to the Chronicle newspaper, the NRZ last week offered
to pay its workers between 50 and 75 percent of their salaries beginning end
of April, depending on their pay-grades, with the lowest grades getting a
Under the proposal, which was opposed by the
workers’ representatives, the lowest paid worker will get around $150 every
month, to enable workers to at least pay rent and other bills.
parastatal’s general manager Retired Air Commodore Mike Karakadzai
downplayed the simmering discontent, telling the media that the proposal was
merely a suggestion.
However, workers have since blasted NRZ
management for making such proposals, which they said only dealt with future
salaries but were mute on the salary backlog.
Calling the arrangement
‘sinister’, one worker told the Chronicle: “We are not happy at all. From
past experience, we know our employer cannot be trusted. It is further
disheartening to note that the proposal is silent on how the salary dating
back to June last year will be cleared.”
Last month, the wives of the
parastatals’ workers took the bold step of protesting at the NRZ Bulawayo
offices in a bid to force management to address the plight of their husbands
who had not been paid for eight months.
While it remains to be seen
whether Karakadzai will implement his suggestion to commute part of his
staff’s wages to unwanted leave days, many Zimbabweans will be wondering how
the country’s only rail service provider got into this
Bulawayo-based journalist Lionel Saungweme, who has been
following the NRZ saga, said there was a general feeling that conditions at
the firm have worsened since the arrival of Karakadzai, who is accused of
incompetence by the workers.
Saungweme told SW Radio Africa: “There
are several factors that have led to this mess. The NRZ has lost several
business packages because of corruption.”
He added: “A lot of
business has been moved from the NRZ to people with ZANU PF links such as
Mines Minister Obert Mpofu who has taken over the transportation of coal
from Hwange to Bulawayo. There is no other reason why this would happen
considering that rail is cheaper than the road transport that Mpofu
“Before Mpofu was awarded that contract, Billy Rautenbach, an ally
of ZANU PF bigwigs Emmerson Mnangagwa and the Mujurus, was transporting the
coal. This has contributed to the decline in the NRZ revenue base, hence its
failure to pay workers,” Saungweme continued.
Another key dimension
to the circus at the NRZ is the knock-on effect of the violent and
disastrous land reform programme which almost killed the country’s
once-vibrant agricultural sector.
“While the NRZ used to get a lot of
business transporting tobacco, maize, and livestock from commercial farmers,
when these were forced off the land, it reduced production substantially and
cut off that revenue line for the NRZ,” Saungweme said.
A few years
back, SW Radio Africa reported on the theft of NRZ signal equipment, which
is made of copper, for onward sell to syndicates in China allegedly by
individuals with links to Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi. Mohadi was
allegedly destabilising NRZ operations and imposing huge costs on the
HARARE – President Robert Mugabe is set
to sack Zimbabwe High Court Judge, Justice Charles Hungwe after the pro-regime
Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku controversially wrote a letter recommending
Justice Charles Hungwe
Hungwe angered the regime when he
ordered the release of human rights lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa and granted a search
warrant to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission to search the offices of
three Zanu PF cabinet ministers.
Last month the state media began a
campaign to scandalise Hungwe claiming he had denied justice to a 55-year-old
man he convicted of murder in 2003 by failing to sentence him over the past 10
years after losing the court records.
No mention was made of who in the court
system lost the records.
In the other case it’s claimed Hungwe
“unprocedurally granted a notice of withdrawal in a house wrangle pitting Old
Mutual chief executive Jonas Mushosho and a man who bought the latter’s
Those close to the case said the
documents were simply forged and the judge was also a victim.
Chidyausiku is said to have written a
letter to Mugabe ‘explaining’ the charges leveled against Hungwe. We understand
the letter is in terms of section 87 (3) of the Constitution that deals with the
removal of judges from office.
Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku officially opens the 2013 legal
year at the High Court in Harare yesterday. Looking on (from left) are Justices
Charles Hungwe, Samuel Kudya and Hlekani Mwayera
A report in the Zanu PF controlled
Herald newspaper claims; “After explaining the charges to Justice Hungwe, the
Chief Justice asked him if he had anything to say in his defence to which
Justice Hungwe said ‘No, I am in your hands.”
Under the constitution Mugabe will have
to appoint a tribunal to inquire into the alleged conduct of Justice Hungwe.
This we understand will just be a formality. The regime has already made a
decision to get rid of Hungwe.
The Law Society of Zimbabwe has already
issued a statement expressing concern at what they perceive as the deliberate
targeting of Justice Hungwe.
Last month Justice Hungwe granted the
Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) permission to search the offices of
Mines minister Obert Mpofu, Indigenisation minister Saviour Kasukuwere, and
Transport and Infrastructural Development minister Nicholas
The commission also pounced on the
National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Board (NIEEB) and Zimbabwe
National Road Administration (Zinara) offices which fall under Kasukuwere and
It was only Justice George Chiweshe who
blocked the searches.
Chiweshe is a key Mugabe ally who as
past chairman of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission withheld presidential
election results for weeks in March 2008, amid reports the period was used to
manipulate and massage the figures that denied Morgan Tsvangirai an outright
Thursday, 11 April 2013 09:57 BULAWAYO - A
woman who allegedly referred to President Robert Mugabe as a poor man was
yesterday left banking on her advanced age to walk free after being hauled
Stella Scouter, who runs a crèche in Bulawayo, is facing four
counts for insulting or undermining the authority of the 89-year-old
president after she allegedly told an employee to go and get his salary from
Scouter is 75 and her lawyers say at such an advanced age,
she poses no threat.
Scouter’s lawyer Modicai Donga told a magistrate
yesterday that the State summoned her to court without being authorised by
the Attorney General as stated by the rules.
He also argued that
Scouter was harmless due to her age.
The magistrate ruled that the case
will resume after the State has been authorised by the AG.
Tarisai Mutarisi told the court that in November last year, Souter’s
employee, Tafadzwa Satimburwa demanded his salary but was told: “You should
go and claim the money from Mugabe. You and your president are very poor;
you can’t win the case against me.”
In January, the 75-year-old is
alleged to have also told employees: “I want to chase you from work and see
what Mugabe would do to me.”
The State says an informant reported to
police after Scouter continued insulting Mugabe on different occasions. -
Thursday, 11 April 2013 12:52 View
Comments Clemence Manyukwe, Political Editor CHIADZWA families affected by
the mining of diamonds in their area are still to get compensation, more
than four years after organised extraction of the gems started in
Marange. On average, each household is supposed to get US$40 000 in
compensation to pick up the pieces after being relocated but up to now that
has not materialised. This comes as it also emerged this week that the
Agricultural Rural Development Authority (ARDA)’s Transau Estate, where
families from the diamond fields are being relocated, can no longer cater
for 4 000 additional families affected by diamond mining activities in
Chiadzwa. Government is now looking for alternative land outside the district
to resettle the 4 000 families. Manicaland provincial administrator,
Fungai Mbetsa, is said to have told a Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on
Mines and Energy in Vumba a fortnight ago that diamond mining companies in
Chiadzwa were reluctant to implement projects that sustain relocated
families’ livelihoods and were failing to prioritise social amenities as
well as monetarily compensate the relocated families. This week, the
Zimbabwe Environment Law Association (ZELA), weighed in, saying the mining
companies were delaying the implementation of an irrigation scheme at ARDA
Transau Estate that would provide a sustainable livelihood for the affected
families due to lack of consensus on the funding mechanism. The companies
were also said to be taking long to conclude projects such as the
refurbishment of Wellington Primary School, yet they were championing other
causes outside areas they were operating from namely sponsoring major
sporting activities in Harare when owners of the ancestral lands on which
they are earning huge profits were suffering. ZELA said while the legal
and policy framework provides for communities to be relocated when minerals
are discovered, this must be done in a way that does not negatively impact
on the livelihoods of communities. “The legal position is very clear that
communities do now own land. Communal lands where most mining activities
take place is state land,” said ZELA director, Mutuso Dhliwayo. “The
state has an on obligation to ensure that the eviction of communities and
their subsequent relocation when mineral resources like diamonds are found
is done in a manner that does not negatively affect their rights before,
during and after the process.” The failure by diamond firms to meet their
obligations to displaced villagers comes at a time when some of their
officials’ lives have become a tale of from rags to riches. Some are
building up market houses in foreign countries after siphoning
profits. Finance Minister Tendai Biti has also said government finances were
in a precarious state, with the situation being worsened by failure by the
firms to remit all that is due to treasury. The minister said Anjin, a
joint venture between the local and Chinese military was the worst culprit
in terms of flouting the country’s laws. “Clearly, we fear as the Ministry of
Finance that there might be a parallel government somewhere in respect of
where these revenues are going, and are not coming to us. There is
opaqueness and unaccountability surrounding our diamonds,” said Biti.
Thursday, 11 April 2013 12:30 View
Comments Phillimon Mhlanga, Business Reporter THE State Procurement Board
has awarded the tender for the extension of Hwange Power Station to China
Machinery Engineering Company, The Financial Gazette’s Companies &
Markets (C&M) has learnt. Hwange thermal power station is currently using
six units and the expansion would see the plant adding two more
units. The additional units would have a combined generation capacity of 600
megawatts (MW). Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC)’s public relations
executive, Fadzai Chisveto, confirmed the development this week when
contacted by C&M. “The adjudication process has come to an end and last
week we received the final bidding papers from the State Procurement Board.
The tender for the expansion of Hwange Power Station was awarded to China
Machinery Engineering Company,” she told C&M. Also vying for the
contract to expand the thermal power station was another Chinese company,
Sino Hydro Corporation, which last November was awarded the tender to extend
Kariba South Power Station by two more units to add 300MW to the national
grid. China Machinery Engineering Company tendered its bid at US$1,38 billion
while Syno Hydro Corporation’s bid price was US$1,17 billion for extension
of the Hwange power plant. ZPC and China Machinery Engineering Company
are now expected to sign a contract that would pave way for the commencement
of expansion work. Last year, ZPC managing director, Engineer Noah Gwariro,
said work at Hwange thermal power station was expected to start during the
course of this year. “We are aiming to conclude the contract negotiations by
early next year (2013). That will help us to move on and organise the
funding and get the work started. I firmly believe that work at Hwange power
station will start during the course of 2013,” he said. Zimbabwe is
currently facing crippling power shortages with the national power demand at
peak periods estimated to be at 2 200MW against available generation of
about 1 000MW with the shortfall being imported from regional power
utilities. Installed capacity amounts to 1 960MW.
being hauled before Disciplinary Committees are being denied their right to
legal representation, claims the Progressive Teachers Union of
The union’s Information, Education and Research
Officer Fannuel Mabhugu said teachers were being victimised as a result.
“According to the Public Service Regulations of 2000, it is clear that
someone who has been summoned for a disciplinary hearing is free to consult
a legal representative.
“One is free to go with a legal representative or
trade union official to help you, but the teachers are being denied this
right. Sometimes when the legal representative is allowed into the hearing,
they are told that only the teacher is allowed to answer to questions from
the disciplinary committee,” said Mabhugu.
Most of the personnel on
the committees are political appointees with little knowledge regarding the
conduct of the disciplinary hearings, he added. In a statement, the PTUZ
said: “In a recent case, Wilbert Muringani, a graduate of the PTUZ Paralegal
Training Project was barred access into an office where a PTUZ member Sister
Catherine Munekani was appearing to answer misconduct charges before a
Disciplinary Committee in Gweru, Midlands Province.
“This was despite
the fact that the letter notifying her of the convening of the disciplinary
hearing advised her of her right to be represented by a registered legal
practitioner or a Union official. The hearing was chaired by the Provincial
Education Director, Mrs. Agnes Gudo.”
The PTUZ cited another case in
which the right of teachers to legal representation was
“Enock Paradzayi, another PTUZ paralegal was told by Danny
Moyo, the Provincial Education Director for Bulawayo Province and
Chairperson of the Disciplinary Committee hearing the misconduct charges
preferred against PTUZ member Kudzai Makumbe and that he could only be
present but was not supposed to say anything during the hearing,” reads the
The Minister of Education, Sport, Art and Culture, David
Coltart was not available for comment at the time of going to
Minister of Education David Coltart said: “I strongly believe in
the right of all people to have legal representation and also for the rule
of law to apply to all. I will investigate these allegations and will do all
in my power to ensure that Teachers’ rights are respected.”
THE government expects to mobilise funding from private
investors for water development at a water summit scheduled for Bulawayo
later this month, a cabinet minister said this week.
struggling to supply clean and safe water to its citizens mainly due to poor
planning, technical and financial constraints over the years.
experienced its worst cholera outbreak, blamed on lack of clean water, in
2008/9 which killed over 4,000 people countrywide.
The water summit will
run from April 23-27. Water Resources Development and Management Minister
Sipepa Nkomo said a number of potential investors were expected to attend
"The Water Summit is a private initiative by a South African
company called M&N Capital based in Johannesburg and has been endorsed
by the government," Nkomo said.
"Zimbabwe will be represented at
government level at the summit," he said.
Nkomo said government will
articulate its vision, and the challenges it has faced in developing the
water sector. "The summit will help identify priorities and mechanisms for
more effective water resource integration and will focus on rural and urban
water supply as well as hygiene and sanitation," he said.
Government is in need of funding to help with water supply and this is why
we are hoping that the Water Summit will be a good platform to lure
investors in water sector," he said.
Some suburbs in Harare have gone
for months without water, prompting increasing calls for government to come
up with robust measures to expand existing water infrastructure to match the
growing urban population.
The government has a number of projects such as
Kunzvi Dam, Musami Dam, Mtshabezi Pipeline and Zambezi Water Project which,
if undertaken, would go a long way in addressing water problems in the
The UNDP's new resident coordinator in South Africa has
come under fire for his role in Zimbabwe's disastrous cholera outbreak in
It is alleged that due to the warm relations between Agostinho
Zacarias, the former United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) chief in
Harare and Zanu-PF in 2008, the UN in 2008 ignored internal cholera warnings
months before an outbreak that claimed more than 4 000 lives.
has come to light after a recent tribunal hearing looking into the unfair
dismissal in 2009 of Georges Tadonki, who headed the UN humanitarian office
in Harare at the time. He was dismissed by Zacarias.
The UN tribunal's
104-page ruling reveals how Zacarias, who, it says, was close to President
Robert Mugabe's Zanu-PF party, was unable or unwilling to take measures to
combat cholera — which affected about 100 000 people in 2008.
tribunal found that Zacarias wrongfully fired Tadonki after run-ins over how
the Harare office was managed.
Months before the outbreak, Tadonki said
he warned his superiors of a looming crisis, telling Zacarias that 30 000
cases or more of cholera were possible. But, according to the tribunal,
Zacarias ignored that warning because of his close links with senior Zanu-PF
Zacarias, a Mozambican national, is said to be particularly
close to the party's politburo member and Transport Minister Nicholas Goche,
as well as to other people he had met before 1980 during the liberation war
days in Maputo, Mozambique, Tadonki's lawyers said.
The UN said
Zacarias failed poor Zimbabweans by opting to protect the image of Zanu-PF,
a move that has exposed misplaced priorities at the UNDP Harare office at
Cholera outbreak In 2008, rocked by galloping inflation and
an economic meltdown, Harare was unable to provide water to residents in its
high-density townships for months, leading to the cholera
Following relatively peaceful general elections in March 2008,
in which Mugabe was defeated by rival Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)
leader Morgan Tsvangirai in the first round of the poll, Zanu-PF launched a
fierce campaign of violence and intimidation, which was directed by the
military, to retain its leader in office.
Facing defeat, Mugabe
unleashed a vicious campaign of brutality. Tsvangirai said this operation
had claimed the lives of more than 200 of his supporters, and he dropped out
of the race.
In the middle of that crisis, Zacarias decided that his own
closeness with Zanu-PF "overrode his responsibility to the UN's missions and
values", the ruling says.
Tadoniki fingered UN officials for
condoning Zacarias's behaviour by giving in to his demands, which included
his marginalisation and eventual firing.
The report says the leadership
in New York targeted and sacrificed Tadoniki for the benefit of
It further dismissed that the alleged poor performance of
Tadoniki by Zacarias was not based on any proper appraisal process and
During the hearing Tadoniki also accused Zacarias of
conspiring with the Zimbabwe government to deny him and his family
accreditation to work in the country. Tadoniki says as a result his family
had to leave Zimbabwe and stay in a South African hotel for
The UN said it cannot comment as the ruling is being
Spotlight The ruling puts the UNDP office in the spotlight
given its current role in Zimbabwe. The country recently asked for funding
for an election planned for this year. In line with the UN guidelines on
electoral support, the request was sent to Turtle Bay and a needs assessment
mission will be dispatched. The UN's Focal Point for Electoral Assistance
Activities arm is expected in the country soon.
Tendai Biti and Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, tasked by the government
to source funding for the referendum and general elections, have asked the
UNDP for $250-million.
In a letter to Zimbabwe's UNDP resident
representative, Alain Noudehou, dated February 4, the two ministers said
Zimbabwe only had "a combined budget of $25-million, yet the two processes
are currently estimated to be in excess of $250-million".
broke coalition government recently raised $50-million from Old Mutual and
the National Social Security Authority for the referendum on the new
Constitution last month. It is now hoping private companies and the UNDP
will fund the elections.
The UNDP also helped the country with cash
for its constitution-making process last year.
Under the unity
government, Zanu-PF and the MDC have agreed not to hold elections under the
The UN tribunal ruling also raises questions about the
role of the UN during a typhoid outbreak last year that claimed an
undisclosed number of lives. The organisation has been criticised in
non-governmental circles for not alerting the international community to the
Civil society organisations that spoke to the Mail &
Guardian but did not want to be named because they work closely with the UN
or receive funding from it, said the ruling raises questions about what the
UN will do if the events of 2008 repeat themselves ahead of the looming
In Zimbabwe, the UNDP's focus is underpinned by the millennium
development goals, which include eradication of extreme poverty and hunger,
humanitarian relief, support for domestic and international dialogue to help
build consensus on the country's problems, strengthening the capacity of
national institutions to deliver on the goals and providing basic social
services with particular attention to vulnerable groups.
said Tadoniki must be paid, among other things, two years salary and $60 000
for moral damages and abuse of proceedings he suffered.
HARARE, 11 April 2013 (IRIN) - Five
years after Zimbabwe’s political and economic crisis peaked in 2008, the
economy continues to perform poorly, with the manufacturing sector still
shedding jobs and unemployment estimated at 75 percent. But the real level
of unemployment is almost impossible to gauge as countless Zimbabweans are
making a living in the informal sector.
Kumbirai Katsande, President of
the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI), told IRIN Zimbabwe has
become a “nation of traders”. The municipal markets in Mbare, a sprawling
low-income suburb of Harare, the capital, are overflowing with people
selling goods. Trading space and the money to rent it are scarce, so
entrepreneurs have set up shop outside markets and in other open
The police crack down on them every once in a while but Robert
Guveya, who sells pirated DVDs, thinks it’s worth the risk. “I cannot get a
job and am just trying to earn an honest living,” he said.
trading is not limited to low-income areas. Harare’s city centre has its
fair share of sidewalk salespeople and flea markets, one of the largest of
which is located behind a shopping centre in middle-class Avondale.
Rumbidzai Gava, who quit her job as a dental assistant and now imports
second-hand clothing from Mozambique for $250 a bale, rents a stall there
for US$10 per day. “I make gross more than $700 per bale and sometimes the
clothes go very quickly. I am making much more than the $250 [a month] I got
at the dentist’s,” she said.
The Zimbabwe Cross Border Association
represents traders who import goods for resale, primarily from South Africa,
but also from as far afield as Hong Kong, Taiwan and Britain. Killer Zivhu,
the president, estimated that at the peak of the economic crisis - when the
informal economy supplied almost everything that could not be found on
supermarket shelves - up to three-quarters of adult Zimbabweans were
involved in some form of trade.
Low wages mean that many Zimbabweans
continue to live off the proceeds of informal trade. They import car parts,
electronic goods, clothes and even cars, and often employ other people to
sell the goods, thus creating jobs. However, they are not recognized legally
and face harassment and arrest by local authorities and the police. Zivhu
said their lack of legal status also limits their access to
Shrinking manufacturing sector
Before the Zimbabwe dollar
was replaced in 2009 by a multi-currency financial system using the US
dollar, Botswana pula and the South African rand, many Zimbabweans were
forced out of formal-sector jobs because hyperinflation had made their
salaries almost worthless. Tapfumaneyi Tirivanhu left his job at a furniture
factory in 2007 when he could no longer make ends meet and moved to Botswana
for several years. He returned to Zimbabwe in 2011 and started a carpentry
shop in a bay at the Harare Home Industries shed in Mbare with some tools
and machinery he had bought in Botswana.
“It was slow in the
beginning, as I had little money to buy materials with,” he told IRIN, but
after his former employer went bust in 2012 and an ex-colleague joined him,
they started supplying the old company’s customers. “There are four of us
here and three upholsterers, so I am providing employment for seven people
including myself,” Tirivanhu said.
In a good month they each take home as
much as $300. “It’s much more than I would earn working for a company, and
though I do not have benefits such as medical aid and a pension, I am doing
alright,” he said.
CZI’s Katsande said the manufacturing sector had been
shedding jobs since a slump started around August 2012. “Some of the
companies that are still operating are introducing shorter working weeks so
they can manage the wage bill. In a lot of instances they would retrench if
they could afford to pay the workers off, but they do not have the money to
He noted the lack of government and infrastructural support. “We
need new technology, as in some factories everything is obsolete, which
makes production inefficient and expensive. Too many people are employed,
it’s very wasteful.”
Replacing the Zimbabwe dollar with a
multi-currency system has been a double-edged sword, he said. “We now have
stability, but are at the mercy of the fluctuations of the currencies of
wherever we are importing materials or machinery from. We cannot devalue the
US dollar, which we could do with our own currency. As a result, our
products can be uncompetitive on the international market.”
cost of manufacturing in Zimbabwe means that some local goods are more
expensive than imported ones, which the government could remedy by levying
higher duties on imports, Katsande said, warning that without more
government support, the manufacturing sector would keep shrinking.
contrast, the mining sector is growing rapidly and now employs some 43,000
workers, up from less than 3,000 at the height of Zimbabwe’s economic
crisis. “There has been substantial growth in the sector and we expect it to
keep growing,” said Edward Mubvumba, of the National Employment Council for
the Mining Industry. He added that thousands more unregistered artisanal
gold and diamond miners are operating illegally.
Agriculture remains the largest sector in the economy. Zimbabwe
National Statistics Agency (Zimstat) figures put the number of people
employed in agriculture in 2010 at 815,000 - more than double the pre-crisis
figure, which peaked at 355,000 in 1997. Prof Tony Hawkins, the head of the
University of Zimbabwe’s business school, said this was partly because up to
2009, the figures only took into account employees in the commercial farming
sector, but since then they have included communal farmers in resettlement
areas, and those who work for them.
Hawkins said Zimbabwe’s informal
sector was playing a crucial role in reducing poverty and unemployment. He
argued that current unemployment estimates ignored the role of the informal
sector, and put the true unemployment figure at less than 50 percent. “Half
of the economy is informal but it’s difficult to measure,” he said. “They
don’t pay taxes, so they contribute little to the fiscus but… [the sector]
definitely has a positive impact on poverty levels.”
does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]
-This week, in the Guthrie Munyuki
Interview, we bring you British Ambassador to Zimbabwe Deborah Bronnert, whose
country is fresh from hosting the Friends of Zimbabwe (FoZ) meeting in London.
Below are the excerpts.
Q. Recently Britain hosted the Friends of
Zimbabwe (FoZ) meeting in London which was attended by three representatives of
the parties in the Zimbabwe inclusive government.
What are the positives
that have come out of the meeting?
A. It’s about engagement and planning
for a better future.
The Friends of Zimbabwe (FoZ) meeting brought
together the international donor community to gain a shared understanding of
events in Zimbabwe over the next crucial period when elections are due to be
It was a chance to consider together the best ways for us to
continue working closely with any government that emerges from free and fair
elections, to help accelerate its path towards prosperity.
importantly, this time, the three Zimbabwean ministers were invited and
contributed, along with Sadc representatives, to the discussions to ensure that
we all understood directly what the Zimbabwean parties wanted in terms of
engagement and future priorities both in the run-up to the elections and
Their contributions set the framework for all the
We also re-affirmed our support for Sadc’s lead role as
guarantor of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) in its efforts to secure peace
and democracy for Zimbabweans, and all our governments’ continued strong
commitment to the Zimbabwean people and support for a prosperous and democratic
Finally, it was the first time in about 14 years that the UK
government had invited a Zanu PF minister to London.
We have of course had Zanu PF
ministers visiting the UK in that period and have had some political level
meetings elsewhere as well. But it was still a further step forward in terms of
We were also very pleased that the MDC ministers were able to
accept the invitation.
The presence of the three parties underlined to
the international donor community how the Government of National Unity (GNU) is
able to work together, despite the clear differences between the parties, and
engage with external partners in discussions about the future of
Q. What are Britain’s and FoZ longer term development
A. Collectively, FoZ development support has amounted
to around $2,6 billion between 2009 and 2012.
The UK bilaterally
contributed over $120 million in the last UK financial year and this year; this
is set to rise to around $175 million.
The focus is on health, education
and other essential services, infrastructure — including access to water, as
well as support for livelihoods.
For example, we have helped provide
textbooks for all Zimbabwe’s schools and we have a $50 million project that will
improve water and sanitation to millions of Zimbabwean families.
We’ve also helped with governance
projects including the constitution-making process.
We and other donors provide the
ministry of Finance with information about what is being done so they have an
overview of donor spend.
have seen that minister Biti gives quite a lot of detail in his annual budget
statement to Parliament about the various strands of support.
the inception of the GNU, assistance has already shifted in focus from
humanitarian relief towards longer term development aid. We want this to
Following the FoZ meeting, we are continuing our engagement to
agree on the best way to use long-term development assistance, and the
strengthening of our commercial ties, to help Zimbabwe accelerate on its path
We are focussing on the best ways for aid to support
Zimbabwe in building the strong, non-partisan State institutions that it needs —
to achieve stability, growth and wealth creation.
We hope to see Zimbabwe
one day become an aid donor, rather than an aid recipient.
Q. What is the
FoZ’s shared understanding of how things are likely to unfold in Zimbabwe in the
coming year given that the country will be holding elections later this
A. The FoZ Communiqué acknowledges the work done by the GNU to
stabilise the economy and implement the necessary political reforms ahead of
We look forward to continuing to engage constructively with
the GNU and the region in order to support the Zimbabwean people in achieving a
peaceful, prosperous and democratic future.
We recognised the key
importance of the referendum on the new draft constitution in March.
But also that much remains to be
done to implement the reforms agreed by the three GNU parties in the
We welcomed calls by Zimbabwe’s political leaders for peace and
non-violence and the statements by party leaders that Zimbabweans should be able
to choose their own government in free and fair elections, and to be able to
vote without fear or intimidation.
We highlighted the importance of all
Zimbabweans, including State institutions and the security sector, heeding the
calls of the party leaders.
We also expressed concern about the current
harassment of civil society and reports of political violence and made clear
that we think such incidents should cease.
We also stressed the
importance of a vibrant civil society to Zimbabwe’s development.
Again, we are very clear on Sadc’s leading role here. Our key hope for
the year ahead is that there will be free and fair elections and that
Zimbabweans will be able to make their own choices, without fear or
intimidation, about who governs them.
Q. How significant was the London
A. The timing of this year’s FoZ meeting is clearly
It came 10 days after Zimbabwe’s successful constitutional
referendum and comes in an election year.
For the first time at a FoZ
meeting, members of all three parties of the GNU attended.
demonstrated a commitment to engagement and partnership and a desire to have
fruitful exchanges from across the political spectrum on issues that affects
them all ahead of polls and about the future.
Q. Are there signs on the
ground that the Zimbabwe leadership is prepared to help FoZ in their
A. Members of all three parties of the GNU were
invited. We were very pleased that the three GPA negotiators minister Chinamasa,
minister Mangoma and minister Misihairabwi-Mushonga attended.
demonstrated a real willingness to have fruitful exchanges from across the
political spectrum on issues that affect all parties ahead of polls and engage
in conversations about the future.
Q. Britain is blamed by President
Robert Mugabe for drawing up sanctions and seeking to remove him by allegedly
funding the mainstream MDC.
In the wake of the London meeting and EU’s
removal of sanctions on his key allies in Zanu PF, what opportunities are there
for Britain to rebuild ties with Zanu PF and its leader?
A. Our aim is
clear: we want to support the Zimbabwean people and the implementation of the
GPA in order to enable free and fair elections and a peaceful, prosperous and
Before I came to Zimbabwe, my Prime Minister told me
that he wanted me to engage with everyone.
I talk to all parties from
across the political divide and am ready to engage with everyone.
have also been ministerial meetings and, as I have already noted, we were
pleased that minister Chinamasa came to London and participated both in the FoZ
meeting but also, alongside his colleagues, with other political meetings,
including with the FCO minister Mark Simmonds (MP). Q. We have heard and been told
repeatedly that Britain refused to honour its “agreement” to help fund and raise
money for land reforms during the Harare donor conference held in September
Did the frosty relations arise from this meeting?
A. The UK
Government has never agreed to accept responsibility for compensation to those
whose land was compulsorily acquired, often having legally purchased it after
Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition have releaseda reportwritten by
Philan Zamchiya that explores how Zanu PF will seek to reclaim its political
hegemony in the next elections. The reports abstract is as
The classic question is why do political
parties and governments manipulate elections. This paper offers a more nuanced
investigation of why and under what circumstances do authoritarian regimes
decide to adopt and drop certain political strategies of manipulating elections.
In order to answer this question the article investigates the political
strategies at the centre of the Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front
(ZANU PF)’s attempt to win the next harmonised polls and re-establish its
hegemony. Other commentators reduce the ZANU PF electoral strategies to the use
of physical violence against opposition supporters conceptualised as the ‘margin
of terror’. Whilst I agree that state sponsored violence is endemic in Zimbabwe,
I argue that ZANU PF is embarking on a more sophisticated and multipronged
approach to cover its terror tactics in order to re-gain political legitimacy.
The reign of terror unleashed by ZANU PF in the run-up to the June 27, 2008
‘election’ undermined the party’s legitimacy in the Southern African Development
Community (SADC), African Union (AU) and internationally. Hence, physical
violence in 2013 will not be as blatant and as extreme as in the previous June
27, 2008 ‘election’. ZANU PF is aware that naked physical violence will not be
accepted in SADC and yet at the same time a relatively free and fair election
might undermine its electoral chances. Pitied between a rock and a hard place,
what strategies can ZANU PF use in the next harmonised election? The party
prefers a psychological warfare premised on manipulating the fear inculcated in
communities over years among other strategies. These include partisan
registration of voters, ideologically appealing to popular groups; state
financed patronage, control of state media and targeted persecution (devoid of
physical harm) against civil society leaders and opposition supporters. Whether
these political strategies will work in favour of ZANU PF only the next election
In this report published by CiZC, Dr Philan Zamchiya weaves his
exploration of how Zanu PF will re-claim its political hegemony from four
theoretical dimensions that he claims explains the nature of the Zimbabwean
We need to understand the nature of the Zimbabwean state for us to
fully appreciate the nature of the election strategies. We start weaving our
theoretical understanding from four dimensions. Thefirst dimension is
the margin of terror. This has its genesis in the late Professor
Masipula Sithole, who predicted that MDC was going to get 75 seats in the 2000
parliamentary election but when the MDC garnered 62 seats, he said that the
difference was not because of his survey’s fault or margin of error but because
of the margin of terror during the elections. By this he meant ZANU PF’s use of
torture, intimidation and coercion to force people to vote for them which he had
understated [...] The second dimension is what I term the margin of
error on the part of the state. This refers to the padding of votes, a
situation where ZANU PF inflates the votes in its favour and deflates the votes
of its opponents. Thethird
dimension is patronagewhere
the party dishes out land, farm inputs, money, mining licences, et cetera to its
supporters in order to gain electoral support (Alexander 2006, Brett 2012,
Bratton and Masunungure 2008, Zamchiya 2011, Raftopolous 2006). Thefourth one is ideology,
where ZANU PF appeals for support to potential voters through propaganda or
genuine track record in delivery in some sectors [emphasis
The report goes on to challenge two myths in Zimbabwe's political
circles, which they argue are
Myth 1: ZANU PF will go for a liberal
democratic election The first myth being peddled by optimists is that
Zimbabwe will hold a free and fair election. This is premised on the misplaced
notion that SADC is able to arm-twist ZANU PF to fulfil all the tenets in the
Myth 2: ZANU PF will go for a closed
authoritarian election On the other
hand, the pessimists are also peddling a myth that Zimbabwe will witness a
‘bloodbath’ in the next election synonymous with the June 27 2008 election
The article argues that the crux of the next election depends on
Zanu PF winning swing constituencies, and it goes on to elucidate which
constituencies those are and describe some of the tactics Zanu PF will use,
extracted breifly from the report below:
The first tactic of electoral alchemy in
the swing constituencies is the postal votes.
Second is candidate manipulation - the
report writes: "as one respondent asserted, ‘I can assure you that there will be
attempts to buy some of the Chinja [MDC] candidates a few hours before the
election especially those in constituencies that may
Third, ZANU PF is targeting swing
constituencies in terms of voter intimidation and bussing in people to
SEVEN years after 18 white Zimbabwean farmers settled on a
chunk of land in Nasawara state at the invitation of the then governor, only
one family is still there. All the others have given up in despair. Bruce
Spain, aged 35, and his father Colin, 66, together with their doughty wives
and a pair of toddlers, are hanging on—but only just.
On flat, dry
scrubland two hours’ drive east of Abuja, the capital, the Spains and their
Zimbabwean compatriots have experimented with a variety of farming
enterprises. But crop yields were dismal, mainly due to poor-quality seed
and fertiliser. Spares were hard to get when machinery broke down. The
Spains’ last hope is a factory that churns out chicken feed. “Until good
seed is available and the theft factor is dealt with there will be very
little commercial farming in Nigeria,” says the older Mr Spain.
litany of problems seems endless. “There’s just no organised marketing
here,” says the younger Mr Spain. “No marketing boards, nothing—in Nigeria
you’re on your own. In Zimbabwe you knew what your pre-planting price
was—and the government guaranteed to buy what you grew. There are no support
structures…In Zimbabwe you’d send a soil sample to the fertiliser company
and they’d tell you what sort would be best. There’s nothing like that
The Spains have no mains electricity, no piped water, no
land-line, no trained labour force, no one handy with basic accountancy, no
available research facilities, no easy access to agricultural data. Roads
are lousy. Theft is endemic.
The biggest initial headache was
persuading a bank to make a long-term loan at less than 20% interest. And
when a bank did agree, the money might not come through. “It was always next
week, then next week,” says the younger Mr Spain. “That’s the general story
in Nigeria.” For two of their first five years they did no farming, due to
the lack of bank finance. “You always need contacts,” he sighs. “Corruption
can be helpful,” he chuckles. “At least it means if you want something done
you can get it done—instantly.”
The older Spains, resilient as ever, have
built a neat single-storey house surrounded by a tall electric fence on a
rocky outcrop. It is reminiscent of Zimbabwe, where their farm was
confiscated; during the guerrilla war, before independence in 1980, their
homestead had been burned down. Here in Nigeria, in the searing heat, they
sleep peacefully on the veranda under a mosquito net. “We get malaria
between three and six times a year.” It seems the least of their worries.
Nehanda Radio, publishes the second article, to this three part
installment on the controversial succession of President Robert Mugabe, in light
of presidential and parliamentary elections taking place soon in
report is intended for you the Zimbabwean reader to make your own informed view,
based on new details, which hitherto could have not been known to you. Pleasant
Defence minister, Emmerson Mnangagwa, who appears to be having a
new spring in his step is not giving up on his bid to become the next President
of the Republic of Zimbabwe.
late Vice President John Nkomo, Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa (who led the
CIO during the Gukurahundi Massacres) and President Robert
Looking at the Zanu PF presidium,Ngwena(The crocodile) as he is popularly known is
nowhere near the radar to attain power, yet one thing we might overlook is his
ability to flash an ace from up his sleeve even when there are no political
prospects and all odds being against him.
figures in Zanu PF holding influential posts, such as secretary for
administration, Didymus Mutasa have openly said it’s impossible for Mnangagwa to
circumvent party procedure, while launching himself to replace Mugabe ahead of
Mujuru who has always been acting president time and again when Mugabe goes on
his annual Asian excursions.
PF insiders told Nehanda Radio, that the one asset Mnangagwa has at his disposal
is covertness and shrewdness in underhand political manoeuvres, allowing him to
operate in proximity to power, thus being able to control and manipulate
political business without being easily traced.
Mnangagwa is by far the most experienced spy in government, and as
we found out from our briefings even his foes acknowledge they are no match for
him in this realm. The minister, Zanu PF officials maintain, is like a duck
appearing peaceful on the surface, yet its feet are moving frantically under the
illustrations sake can be paralleled to Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, who
used his mastery of KGB covert power politics to ascend to the top,” a Zanu PF
minister said.” Putin had always been around, but not a serious contender to
become Russia’s leader since he was an agent posted in East Germany during the
managed to become Boris Yeltsin’s successor ahead of formidable and more senior
politicians we may never know, but my guess and linking it to how Mnangagwa is
now closing in to seal the presidency is related to the dirty world of covert
Russian Vice President, Alexander Rutskoy was next in line to the
throne, but Putin a young and inexperienced prime minister at the time was
Yeltsin’s surprise pick.
“Everywhere the world over, you notice that strong leaders are
likely to have a military or secret service background and they are many
examples. They usually sweep to power after a first republic leader leaves the
“Mugabe has already in a way written Mujuru off, although not in
words because he doubts her leadership qualities and that she was heavily
dependent on her late husband, Solomon.
want you to look at Mnangagwa, without journalism prejudice, so that you
understand where I’m coming from and what it might mean for our country. Did you
know that Mnangagwa is credited to this day, for foiling a putsch on the Zanu
leadership in the late 70s while in Mozambique?
efforts saw him being elevated to Zanu’s intelligence chief, taking over from
Cletus Chigowe. The defence minister went on to become the first head of the
Central Intelligence Organisation at Independence in 1980. So where do you think
such a person’s career is headed?”
Mnangagwa, who was doubling as Mugabe’s personal bodyguard while
at the helm of Zanu’s intelligence machinery, also flashed out Rugare Gumbo,
Henry Hamadziripi, Zivavarwe Muparuri and Crispen Mandizvidza, all of whom were
implicated in the attempted coup to overthrow the Zanu leadership headed by
the coup succeeded, Mugabe might not have become Zanu PF leader and president
home, South African leader, Jacob Zuma is another example our informants
contend. Zuma who had been tainted by corruption charges, and surviving
expulsion from the ANC under Thabo Mbeki, seems to have used his experience and
skills of guiding underground ANC structures in 1987, during his stint in exile
in Lusaka, Zambia.
was immediately appointed to be chief of the ANC intelligence department, and
today it would seem he might have used covert politics, to force Mbeki out using
the ANC Youth League, under its ousted leader, Julius Malema, a one-time close
Zuma ally whom he has discarded.
*Emmerson Mnangagwa, is a notable figure of the
liberation struggle who as we have come to know thwarted an attempted coup on
the Zanu leadership led by Mugabe.
Credited for integrating the Rhodesian intelligence machinery, into the new
Zimbabwe government in 1980. The Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO), has
however largely kept the Rhodesian spying playbook intact. The Joint Operations
Command (JOC)’s philosophy of being a shadow government has not been
General Constantine Chiwenga (ZDF commander); General Phillip
Valerio Sibanda (ZNA commander); Augustine Chihuri (Police commissioner
general); Happyton Bonyongwe (CIO boss); Major General Douglas Nyikayaramba
(Army chief of staff-Quartermaster); Patrick Chinamasa (Justice minister); Oppah
Muchinguri (Zanu PF Politburo member); Jonathan Moyo (Politburo member); Mike
Madiro (Suspended Zanu PF Manicaland chairman); July Moyo (Former cabinet
minister); Josiah Hungwe (Former Masvingo governor); Owen Ncube (Midlands
Power comes from the barrel of a gun
thing Mnangagwa has perfected is to, consolidate influence within the military,
intelligence and foreign affairs realm, which gives him a cutting edge over his
opponents vying to replace Mugabe.
in September last year, it became crystal clear during his 66th birthday party
in Kwekwe that the qualified lawyer had managed to court the military to support
him, as witnessed by Chiwenga’s endorsement of Mnangagwa.
Chiwenga was interestingly the guest of honour at the banquet held
at the minister’s Sherwood Farm.
“Mnangagwa is the only surviving member of the first politburo
meeting because in the first days, the president (Mugabe) did not attend the
politburo,” Chiwenga said according to media reports in the
the others who attended the first meetings are now dead. I’m sure he is alive
for a reason which we all know.”
Mnangagwa and the military generals are now inseparable, as they
accompany him across the country to officiate at government and private
Reports indicate, the defence minister and his army strongmen, now
enjoy being airlifted in the country using military helicopters, including a new
one said to have been purchased from Russia for Mugabe.
usually goes about the length and breadth of his presidential campaign, aboard
army helicopters to reach the many rural constituencies inaccessible by
last month the army generals snubbed Mujuru in Kwekwe, where she was officiating
at the Sables Chemicals plant in favour of a small function in the same
home-town of Mnangagwa.
military top brass chose to grace the commissioning of two blocks of new
classrooms, at Mbizo High school, an open message some say to who matters the
most for the soldiers.
Statesman in waiting?
since Mnangagwa cherry-picked for himself the defence portfolio, after
engineering Zanu PF’s survival following a defeat in the 2008 elections,
believed by many to have been a landslide victory by Prime minister, Morgan
Tsvangirai, he began what can be seen as a personal foreign policy crusade to
strategically promote his “Statesmanship”.
defence minister has met counterparts in China, Iran and South Africa among
other countries. Sources also say, links between the ZDF and Russian military
are also growing, as Zimbabwe opens up more outlets for the possible sourcing of
many foreign visits Mnangagwa has made, one made to Iran in 2012 remains
outstanding, because he did not just meet the Iranian President, Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad and his generals to consolidate military cooperation, and to
organise the training of army officers in that country.
Mnangagwa was given a red-carpet welcome by Iranian generals, who
he said were good friends of Zimbabwe dating back to the days of the armed
struggle, against Britain.
have now been independent for 30 years,” Mnangagwa is captured by a news clip
from Press TV.
throughout, the 30 years we have received support from the Islamic Republic of
Iran. I have come here to consolidate and deepen our relations with the minister
of defence, and the defence of The Republic of
more serious disclosures in our findings, Zanu PF sources say, Mnangagwa has
always been Mugabe’s blue-eyed boy. Although they have been frosty relations,
here and there, the two seem to find each other against the
the 2004 Tsholotsho fallout, caused by the alleged plot to push Mnangagwa as VP
ahead of Mujuru, Mugabe punished most of the culprits including his favourite
minister at the time, Jonathan Moyo and six other Zanu PF provincial
Mnangagwa remained unscathed, and Mugabe allowed his anger to cool
down while still keeping the minister.
the years Mnangagwa has lost parliamentary elections, but Mugabe has come to his
rescue, making room for him in his cabinet and at one time even personally
seeing to it that he became Speaker of Parliament.
are many occasions, when Mnangagwa was supposed to be fired from government,”
but Mugabe would not hear any of it.
became clear that there were people plotting to frame Mnangagwa with various
serious charges including a coup, so he could be blamed and charged for it,”
another minister told Nehanda Radio.
have since established, the coup incident referred to, is that of 2007 where
Mnangagwa was alleged to have mobilised for a political putsch. The coup d’état,
involving 400 soldiers and other high ranking officers was to occur between 2-15
Mnangagwa who was visiting China during the saga, dismissed the
coup allegations as “stupid” after holding a crisis meeting with Mugabe in
Harare upon his return.
Alleged leaders of the coup, who included retired army Captain
Albert Matapo, ZNA spokesman Ben Ncube, Major General Engelbert Rugeje and Air
Vice Marshal Elson Moyo were all arrested and charged with
Speculation was rife, that the late Solomon Mujuru’s hand was
heavily involved in the affair, in an attempt to damage Mnangagwa, but state and
military intelligence reported to Mugabe of Mnangagwa’s “clean-hands” in the
former head of the presidential guard, Brigadier Paul Gunda was eliminated and
declared a national hero due to the explosive putsch attempt, military sources
Solomon Mujuru remained untouched, and as we were to learn during
our brief with sources, incidents such as the coup attempt of 2007, and the 2008
mushrooming of the Mavambo party to pose electoral challenges, among other
highly sensitive intelligence secrets could have caused the eventual mysterious
death of Solomon.
of Mnangagwa’s long-time allies, such as Josiah Hungwe have anointed him as a
redeemer sent by God, likening him to Ezra in the bible.
the Bible, Ezra was a legal advisor sent by God to redeem the Israelites,”
Hungwe is reported by the press to have said.
in Zimbabwe we also have Emmerson, who happens to also be a legal expert, and
was also sent to redeem the children of Zimbabwe. He is our own
Another major boost is Chiwenga’s seemingly new role in the
faction, as a campaign wizard for the defence minister. The general is
criss-crossing around Zimbabwe, promoting Mnangagwa’s candidature after dropping
his own early ambitions to be president.
Strengths:Mnangagwa has taken the move to court, all the
important levers of power for his presidential bid. Having the military and
intelligence apparatus backing him is a huge advantage over
Zimbabwe political parties have power only on paper, just as the coalition
government, but the centre of all command power revolves around the security
Weaknesses:Not charismatic, and not being in the Zanu PF
Opportunities:The fact that Mugabe will not immediately leave office
after this year’s election, gives Mnangagwa and his troops ample time to plan an
assault of a total and complete power usurpation, since his realistic chances of
being voted into power through the ballot are remote.
Threats:Mnangagwa’s involvement in the Gukurahundi Massacres
stands out as his biggest stumbling block. This alone hinders his presidency,
and even when in power, the atrocities can be raised once again by those wanting
him to be prosecuted by the International Criminal
Mnangagwa a cunning political fox?
curtains comes down on Mugabe’s three decades in power, it remains to be seen if
the spy master will pull a fast one.
Vince Musewe says the role of the liberation movements is
I was not at all surprised by the support of the ANC to ZANU (PF)
because they have a common past and a common destiny. What these two
moribund organizations fail to understand is that the black African's needs
and aspirations have gone beyond liberation to economic freedom.
the ANC and ZANU (PF) are organizations that are showing us their lack of
imagination with regard to the future of Africa. They continually show us
that they cannot shed the old habits and language of liberation, and must
use it on every turn to try and convince us of their relevance. As I have
said before, they continue to divide Africans based on their skin colour
because it worked well for them in the past
In the case of Zimbabwe,
most of us are well educated and progressive in our view of the world and
our aspirations can hardly be represented by freedom fighters of yester
year. Yes, they performed a risky and vital role in dislodging the
colonialist, and it should have stopped there. South Africa is getting there
too, as the enlightened black middle class realizes that their deliverer
from apartheid cannot and is not necessarily qualified as their deliverer to
In Zimbabwe we face a challenge in that, the majority
of our most educated and progressive middle class is outside the country
simply because of the failure of ZANU (PF) to create a modern democracy. We
are therefore missing a large number of those who can help us accelerate
change towards the creation of a modern state. South Africa's middle class
is also becoming educated, but there is a general level of apathy when it
comes to politics, and this continues to limit the country's political
talent for the future. We made that mistake in
Unfortunately, what happens is that, the masses, through their
sheer numbers, become the deciding factor in our politics. I continue to
argue that, the poor sectors of the population that continue to deliver the
vote to ZANU (PF) in Zimbabwe or the ANC in South Africa, do not necessarily
know what is best for them. They continue to sell our future for food hand
outs, bicycles, goats and airtime at election campaign rallies, and are soon
forgetful of why they are poor.
The question is how do we deliver
true freedom to Africans?
Firstly we must acknowledge that the role of
liberation political parties is now over. It is time for new progressive and
diverse political organizations to emerge and take over
Second, we must realize that unless you and I become
politically active, it will always be a case of the average thinkers leading
us. Africa deserves better. We need to change our economic systems and
manage them better and that requires new blood.
Africans must collaborate in the same manner as liberation parties
collaborated during the struggle, to create a momentum towards change and
The problems that we Zimbabweans and South Africans
face are similar. We are all tired of unaccountable politicians enriching
themselves at our expense. We are tired of their inability to deliver on our
economic freedom and blaming the West. Corruption, incompetence and greed
continue to dominate public office, while poverty continues to increase.
Politicians continue to recycle the same people, robbing our countries of
fresh ideas from the young educated progressive African. Black racism
continues to stifle racial integration and social development.
must see more Lindiwe Mazibukos of the DA in South Africa as middle class
blacks rise to the challenge, see beyond their current circumstances and
ignore negative political rhetoric of the ANC. In Zimbabwe, we must see more
Beatrice Mtetwas, Zimbabwe's human right lawyer, as we reject the narrative
of ZANU (PF) of our future. But more important, we must realize the fact
that Africa can never go beyond the limits set by our liberation struggle
political parties, unless we all actively participate in politics and build
modern democracies that deliver economic freedom. We can no longer afford to
watch and exclude ourselves from determining the future of our countries and
then complain for lack of change. That is irresponsible.
We would be
foolish to leave these responsibilities to the ANC in South Africa or ZANU
(PF) in Zimbabwe simply because their mentality cannot imagine beyond
liberation. So let them support each other and disregard what we Zimbabweans
think for, sooner or later, they will be bedfellows in the dustbin of
Vince Musewe is an economic analyst based in Harare. You
may contact him on firstname.lastname@example.org
Press has obtained a video revealing Zimbabwe's main parties using food to
Think Africa Press has obtained a film
revealing rival political parties in Zimbabwe using food and farming inputs to
manipulate voters ahead of elections scheduled in July 2013. Made up of footage
obtained from various meetings, the video highlights the ways in which both
ZANU-PF and the MDC-T use the promise of farming supplies in a bid to secure
The video begins with an MDC activist
explaining that when the political environment is active, parties look for a way
to keep people close, and in an environment of drought and hunger, the promise
of food and farming supplies is one of the most powerful methods of ensuring
In the town of Bindura, situated 88
miles north-east of the capital, Harare, ZANU-PF distribute maize seeds under
strict instructions that the seed is for ZANU-PF supporters only. Meanwhile, an
MDC-T supporter based in Shamva, Mashonaland Central Province, explains that
those who acquired fertiliser from the MDC-T party will not receive anything
The video ends with footage of ZANU-PF
officials warning supporters that if they share their seeds with individuals who
“demonise the president”, they will be arrested and taken to
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