Technicality cannot decide Nduna’s legitimacy: Court 

Source: Technicality cannot decide Nduna’s legitimacy: Court – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019 BY CHARLES LAITON THE Supreme Court yesterday said an appeal filed by MDC Alliance candidate for Chegutu West, Gift Konjana, challenging the election of Dexter Nduna (Zanu PF) — who was erroneously declared the winner by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) — […]

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Source: Technicality cannot decide Nduna’s legitimacy: Court – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019

BY CHARLES LAITON

THE Supreme Court yesterday said an appeal filed by MDC Alliance candidate for Chegutu West, Gift Konjana, challenging the election of Dexter Nduna (Zanu PF) — who was erroneously declared the winner by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) — was of national importance.

Deputy Chief Justice Elizabeth Gwaunza, Justice Rita Makarau and Justice Antonia Guvava unanimously agreed that Konjana’s appeal could not be decided on technical issues raised by the lawyers.

The determination by the three judges to have the matter removed from the roll came about after Konjana’s lawyer Advocate Zvikomborero Mafukidze, had urged the court not to entertain
Nduna’s lawyer Advocate Tawanda Zhuwarara, on the basis that he failed to submit heads of argument on time.

However, after protracted submissions, Zhuwarara apologised to the court and applied for an upliftment of the bar, which was then granted unopposed by Mafukidze, but with an order of costs against Nduna.

“This is an order by consent; application for condonation be and is hereby granted and applicant (Konjana) be and is hereby granted leave to file supplementary heads of argument within 10 days …,” Justice Gwaunza said.

“The matter be and is hereby removed from the roll by consent of both parties and the Registrar is directed to set the matter down (on a preferential basis) and respondent (Nduna) is ordered to pay costs of suit on a legal practitioner and client scale.”

Zec announced Nduna as the winner with

10 932 votes against Konjana with 10 828 votes in the 2018 polls.

However, Zec later admitted to have made an error but informed Konjana that the results could only be overturned by the electoral court.

Later, Konjana filed a petition with the electoral court in Harare seeking the nullification of Nduna’s declaration as the victor saying a tabulation error had occurred and prejudiced him of 120 votes.

High Court judge Justice Mary-Zimba Dube, however, said Konjana would not get the order in his favour since the legal practitioner who drafted his petition had “paid lip service to the law and the rules governing election petitions” when he drafted the petition.

He, therefore, lost the matter and has appealed to the Supreme Court.

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LATEST: Musician receives threats after blasting President Mnangagwa in new song

BULAWAYO artiste Njabulo “SizFire” Nyoni claims to have received threats from unknown people after the release of his single, Cry of a Zimbabwean Child, which lashes out at President Emmerson Mnangagwa. The singer, however, said he would not give in to…

BULAWAYO artiste Njabulo “SizFire” Nyoni claims to have received threats from unknown people after the release of his single, Cry of a Zimbabwean Child, which lashes out at President Emmerson Mnangagwa. The singer, however, said he would not give in to threats to water down his lyrics, urging other musicians to be vigilant and stand […]

Africa must unite to tackle challenges ahead

Source: Africa must unite to tackle challenges ahead | The Herald May 25, 2019 Beavan Dhliwayo Features Writer Zimbabwe today joins the rest of the continent in commemorating Africa Day, marking 56 years since the formation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), now known as the African Union (AU). This day offers people on […]

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Source: Africa must unite to tackle challenges ahead | The Herald May 25, 2019

Africa must unite to tackle challenges ahead

Beavan Dhliwayo Features Writer
Zimbabwe today joins the rest of the continent in commemorating Africa Day, marking 56 years since the formation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), now known as the African Union (AU). This day offers people on the continent an opportunity to pause and reflect on collective actions needed to address challenges facing the continent.

Chief among the challenges is the need to accelerate intra-African trade and boost Africa’s trading position in the global market by strengthening Africa’s common voice and policy space in global trade negotiations.

The OAU was formed in a meeting of over 30 African nations to influence the decolonisation of African countries, including Angola, Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

The organisation committed itself to support freedom fighters and remove military access to colonial nations, and a charter was established to improve the livelihood of member states across Africa, where Ethiopian head of state Emperor Haile Selassie pledged: “May this convention of union last 1 000 years.”
Colonialism is no longer the common enemy.

Apartheid is dead.
Now the common message should evolve around making Africa competitive on the global market and to sufficiently cater for itself without having to rely on European products.

There should be common purpose in combating health issues, poverty, economic freedom, improving the quality of education, mediating in civil wars, ecological issues, fighting climate change and hunger, among others.

Africa has raw materials and all that is needed is that oneness that was exhibited by Africa’s liberation leaders back in the mid-20th Century.
But this is proving to be difficult this century.

The 18th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in January 2012 adopted a resolution to establish a Continental Free Trade Area by an indicative date of 2017.

The summit also endorsed the Action Plan on Boosting Intra-Africa Trade (BIAT) which identifies seven priority action clusters: trade policy, trade facilitation, productive capacity, trade-related infrastructure, trade finance, trade information and factor market integration.

Last year, African leaders held an Extraordinary Summit on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) in March 2018 in Kigali, Rwanda, during which the agreement establishing the AfCFTA was presented for signature, along with the Kigali Declaration and the Protocol to the Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community relating to the Free Movement of Persons, Right to Residence and Right to Establishment.

In total, 44 out of the 55 AU member states signed the consolidated text of the AfCFTA Agreement, 47 signed the Kigali Declaration and 30 put their signatures on the Protocol on Free Movement.

As at end March 2019, only three countries had yet to sign the consolidated text of the AfCFTA Agreement — Benin, Eritrea and Nigeria.

ISS Today wrote that the ambitious AfCFTA, which technically enters into force on May 30, could be the game changer for Africa’s hitherto lacklustre economy.

“Driven by Rwandan President Paul Kagame, the process of reaching this point may well have broken all African records. African Union member states launched negotiations to create this huge market of 1,2 billion people with a GDP of over $3,4 trillion in only March last year.”

Economic analyst Jakkie Cilliers notes that if AfCFTA is implemented to the letter, it will improve Africa’s economic growth and reduce extreme poverty more than any other single factor in the long term.

In his upcoming book on Africa’s future, Cilliers reports on the results of forecasts done using the International Futures software on the likely impacts of 11 major transitions: social grants, rejuvenated education, peace, a fourth wave of democracy, improved health, external support, a demographic dividend (a timely bulge in the size of the working-age population), an upsurge in local manufacturing, an African agricultural revolution, leapfrogging outdated technologies — and the AfCFTA.

Cilliers found that other drivers such as social grants, agriculture, leapfrogging and manufacturing would make the biggest difference in the short term.

But by 2050, the AfCFTA would clearly be exerting the greatest impact on GDP per capita and extreme poverty.
“For example, in lower-middle-income countries it would be boosting annual GDP per capita by over US$1 500, compared to the next biggest factor, technology leapfrogging, which would be adding just over US$900.

“By 2050 also, the AfCFTA would have reduced extreme poverty by over 6 percent, versus the next most effective driver, revolutionised agriculture, which would do so by about 5,5 percent.
Meanwhile, the African leaders should hit the ground running.

From this Africa Day and beyond there should be vigorous talks to conclude critical matters such as tariff schedules, rules of origin and dispute settlements procedures which are still on the table.

Rules of origin stipulate how much of a product must be sourced from within the Free Trade Area for it to qualify for preferential tariff rates.

On the other hand, lessons should be drawn from the Ebola epidemic, to improve the African countries’ public health services, which have suffered the consequences of decades of neglect.

Africa needs to rapidly upgrade those services as well as to improve the capacity of its medical and paramedical workforce.
Of note is that the continent bears one-quarter of the global burden of disease but it has only has two percent of the world’s doctors, according to international public health consultant Cesar Chelala.

To date, progress has been hindered, particularly in rural areas, because the infrastructure and the health services are inadequate, and there is a widespread lack of trained medical personnel.

Africa should decide and address this challenge for the betterment of the continent.
In addition to problems directly related to the health sector, corruption and illicit financial flows are rife and African leaders should collectively strategise to fight these scourges.

Researchers estimate that Africa has lost in excess of $1 trillion in illicit financial flows.
Also the widespread practice of bribing government officials by foreign companies must be curtailed through the enforcement of national and international laws dealing with this vice.

There should be unity of purpose which will strengthen African states.
The weaknesses of a state affect the fight against poverty in a number of ways.
Firstly, fighting poverty requires direct policy interventions, yet poorer African countries are less effective in reaching their poor.

For example, African governments should have the data and administrative know-how necessary to reliably identify their poor.
This means they can’t target resources to them. Anti-poverty programmes in countries such as Malawi, Mali, Niger and Nigeria miss many of their poorest households, and Zimbabwe is not an exception.

According to the World Economic Forum: “The growing evidence on the gaps in state capacity and the importance of effective states for poverty reduction implies that, without significant improvement in governance, Africa may fall further behind in meeting the first sustainable development goal target of ending poverty.

“To accelerate the end of poverty, African states should focus on developing enough capability for designing and delivering poverty reduction strategies. Implementing these reforms is vital. After all, improving the quality of government is not only important to accelerating poverty reduction. It’s also a development goal in itself,” it says.

“This Africa Day should not be just a public holiday, but lessons should be drawn from the late revolutionary icon, Kwame Nkrumah, who once said, ‘Africa must unite or perish!’ Without genuine African unity, our continent will remain at the mercy of imperialist domination and exploitation.”

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Learning from Zimbabwe’s ‘Presidential Elephants’ 

Today we feature an extract written by Sharon Pincott, from the recently released landmark coffee table book titled The Last Elephants, compiled and edited by South Africa’s Don Pinnock and Colin Bell. This book consists of 42 chapters, each written by an expert who gave freely of their time, with stunning photos contributed by world-class […]

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Today we feature an extract written by Sharon Pincott, from the recently released landmark coffee table book titled The Last Elephants, compiled and edited by South Africa’s Don Pinnock and Colin Bell. This book consists of 42 chapters, each written by an expert who gave freely of their time, with stunning photos contributed by world-class photographers.

Source: Learning from Zimbabwe’s ‘Presidential Elephants’ – The Zimbabwean

In its Foreword, HRH Prince William writes: “At the current pace of illegal poaching, when Charlotte turns 25 the African elephant could be gone from the wild… We cannot let this happen. I am not prepared to be part of a generation that lets these iconic species disappear and have to explain to our children why we lost this battle when we had the tools to win it.”

Of the book’s title, Don Pinnock and Colin Bell ponder: “Is this title prophetic? We don’t hope so. But the signs are worrying.” …“This book is a tribute to the many people who work for the welfare of elephants, especially those who risk their lives for wildlife each day: field rangers and the anti-poaching teams, in particular. It is an acknowledgement, also, of the many communities around Africa that have elected to work with elephants and not against them. The book is also a tribute to such researchers as Iain and Oria Douglas-Hamilton, Joyce Poole, Cynthia Moss, Daphne Sheldrick, Paula Kahumbu, Mike Chase, Kelly Landen, Michelle Henley, Sharon Pincott and many others – the Jane Goodalls and Diane Fosseys of the elephant world who have dedicated their lives to these great, graceful and engaging animals.”

Don Pinnock said in an interview: “Elephants are extremely intelligent, long-suffering and essentially gentle animals with family structures and allegiances similar to our own. Our bond is well expressed by one of the writers, Sharon Pincott, who spent many years with a single herd in Hwange, Zimbabwe.”

Below is an extract from Sharon Pincott’s chapter (Chapter 24 of The Last Elephants), titled Learning from Zimbabwe’s ‘presidential elephants’. Later in this chapter, Pincott warns that “uninformed message[s] – that all’s well and under control – [is] one of the very real dangers elephants face”. She also warns that “simply seeing lots of grey moving through the bush certainly doesn’t mean that all is well within each family”.

“Zimbabwe’s presidential elephants roam a relatively small slice of unfenced land in western Zimbabwe’s Hwange Estate, their huge footfalls etched daily in the Kalahari sand. I arrived in March of 2001 to work with them, a fearless young woman from Australia, eager to embark on a new life working alone, untrained, unpaid and self-funded.

The elephants were said to inhabit just one section of land and to be specially protected from hunting, culling and other ills by a 1990 presidential decree. Although the decree was probably well-intentioned at the time, the realities on the ground were worrying.

Few elephants remained just on the Hwange Estate. Hwange National Park – some 100 times larger than the estate – beckoned, with a mere railway line separating these two areas. The elephants, I also discovered, didn’t belong to just one herd. Which were presidential elephants and which were not? They were all said to be presidential when (and perhaps only infrequently) they were within the estate’s boundaries. Research into population dynamics pointed to another anomaly. The 300+ elephants touted to be presidential could never have proliferated from a handful of ‘original’ estate elephants, as the public had been led to believe. The influx from the adjoining Hwange National Park was certain.

Various elephants were easily recognisable and, in my early years, did spend much of their time on the estate with their families. A few of these individuals were known by name to some resident safari guides. Most notable were two adult females, Inkosikasi and Skew Tusk, said to be two of the original presidential elephants. Yet I never encountered these two or any of their family members intermingling, so it was unlikely that they were related. Inkosikasi was a big, tuskless cow but, as I soon discovered, there were several such cows and all were mistakenly called Inkosikasi. When Skew Tusk broke her skewed tusk, as she did every few years, people with no knowledge of her ear patterns and/or family members could no longer identify her. Nor, therefore, would they know if she suddenly disappeared from her family. In fact, I soon realised that relatively little detail was known about this clan of elephants, apart from their being calm, friendly and used to the close presence of game-drive vehicles, something considered unusual at the time.

There was still more to contemplate. Though they enjoyed nominal protection under the head of state, they could hardly be considered a flagship herd when they were off-limits to all but a privileged few with money to stay at a couple of private lodges. And no special security measures had been implemented to protect them. What happened, I wondered, when they wandered into nearby sport-hunting areas or the unfenced Hwange National Park (where ration-hunting regularly took place)? The park had wildlife rangers, but I never encountered them patrolling the estate, which didn’t even have an anti-poaching team of its own. Equally concerning, trophy hunters had begun operating between two of the estate’s photographic lodges without a murmur of public concern.

So I inherited a tangled web of inaccuracies and confusion, with nothing implemented on the ground to give weight to the decree. Dedicated, long-term monitoring, intimate knowledge and special protection measures had, in fact, been lacking during the 11 years since President Robert Mugabe had issued his decree. Many, even within Zimbabwe, were not aware that these elephants existed, and there had been no notable government interest in them since their naming.

My timing was, in the eyes of friends and family, bizarre. I was working alone in a volatile country, not my own. People were fleeing violent land take-overs and here I was on a preapproved, but self-appointed mission to raise increased awareness of these particular elephants. What they urgently needed was an independent person with an open mind, a great deal of patience and tenacity, and a willingness to learn; someone who could be their voice among the political and economic madness that was Zimbabwe at this time. I was, it seemed to me, in the right place at the right time.

The elephants on the Hwange Estate were breathtaking. They were easy-going and glorious to behold. It was an opportunity and a privilege to get to know them intimately and I set out to learn everything I could about them as individuals and families. As a non-scientist I obtained input from members of Kenya’s long-term Amboseli Elephant Project (run by pioneer Cynthia Moss), who were all happy to share their invaluable knowledge with me. Right from the start, I vowed to continually remind the Zimbabwean authorities about the unique status of these elephants and to raise their flag high in a bid to secure their wellbeing.

My first task was to introduce structure to the naming of individual elephants. As had been done in Kenya, I assigned a letter of the alphabet to each family and gave all the elephants within that family group names beginning with it. There was the extended A family, the B family, C family, and so on. It made no sense to me to use numbers, as science prefers.

I classed as presidential elephants those families which, in 2001 and 2002, appeared to be spending most of their time on the estate. How frequently I encountered each of the families during my daily 8 hours in the field, day after day, year after year, made it possible to gauge which ones didn’t wander too far. Studies had found that older, independent males wandered over great distances, something my own sightings supported. So, given this fact, and also how regularly the adult males disappeared for good after wandering into nearby sport-hunting concessions, I concentrated on the family groups, taking thousands of identification photographs (right ear, left ear, front-on). Slowly and carefully, I began piecing together family trees……”

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Lorraine Guyo to have reality show, speaks about Ndinyengeiwo video and dating Chizhanje rumours

THE Ndinyengeiwo girl — Lorraine Guyo — who this year became a celebrity overnight after asking suitors to propose to her ahead of Valentine’s Day, will soon have a reality show of her own. After a video clip of her asking men to propose to her as she …

THE Ndinyengeiwo girl — Lorraine Guyo — who this year became a celebrity overnight after asking suitors to propose to her ahead of Valentine’s Day, will soon have a reality show of her own. After a video clip of her asking men to propose to her as she did not want to celebrate Valentine’s Day […]

Chiredzi farmers lose unutilised land 

Source: Chiredzi farmers lose unutilised land – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019 BY GARIKAI MAFIRAKUREVA/SILAS NKALA SCORES of Chiredzi A1 farmers in Essenby have received letters of withdrawal from the Lands ministry after failing to utilise the land allocated to them during the fast-track land reform programme. This was revealed in court after Abious Masitiki […]

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Source: Chiredzi farmers lose unutilised land – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019

BY GARIKAI MAFIRAKUREVA/SILAS NKALA

SCORES of Chiredzi A1 farmers in Essenby have received letters of withdrawal from the Lands ministry after failing to utilise the land allocated to them during the fast-track land reform programme.

This was revealed in court after Abious Masitiki dragged Makanani Muchayi, who had settled on his farm, to court in a bid to put to rest their two-year fight over a 50-hectare plot.

In his heads of argument, Masitiki said the withdrawal letter, which was issued to him during the pre-trial conference, was dubious.

According to his supporting documents, which included a Chiredzi district lands committee certificate of occupation dated July 26, 2001 signed by the district administrator (DA) and Chiredzi Rural District Council chief executive – Masitiki was offered plot number 103 in Essenby in 2001.

However, according to the land offer withdrawal letter dated March 20, 2017 seen by Southern Eye and signed by former Chiredzi DA, Ndeya Nyede, district war veterans chairperson

Killer Makuni and the district lands officer, Honest Mapfumo – the land was withdrawn from Masitiki with effect from that date due to failure to utilise it.

The withdrawal letter read: “Please, be advised that the district lands committee is withdrawing the offer of land made to you for the reasons that you failed to abide by the conditions set out in the fast-tract resettlement allocation form on conditions of take-up and utilisation.

“If you wish to make any representation on this issue, please, do so within seven days of the receipt of the notification and please direct the correspondence to the chairperson of DLC (DA).”

Masitiki, however, argued that the withdrawal letter was cooked up and maintained that he only saw it during the pre-trial conference.

According to him, over 20 other resettled A1 farmers were also being kicked out of Essenby farms under similar circumstances.

Lands minister Perrence Shiri could not be reached for comment.

Nyede, who is now the Zaka district administrator, admitted signing the documents before his transfer, but said he was not aware if the plots were now occupied.

“Yes, I signed those documents, but I am not sure as of now if the plots are occupied because those letters were issued after inspections had been done and those pieces of land found unutilised. Definitely, the exercise was meant to consider new applications on underutilised or untaken plots,” he said.

Mapfumo said they had carried out a land audit and offers for all unutilised land were withdrawn. The district lands officer, however, asked why Southern Eye was interested in the issue.

“What is your interest in the whole issue? I know you are a journalist, but are you a lawyer? Come to my office if you want clarification,” he said, before cutting the phone.

Meanwhile, 56 Zanu PF activists, who settled at Heany Junction Farm in Umguza, Matabeleland North province in 2013, are challenging the government over eviction notices they were served with recently, their lawyer has said.

Yesterday, their lawyer Dumisani Dube from Mathonsi Ncube Law Chambers said the villagers received eviction notices on May 12 despite having won a court case in December 2017, stopping government from evicting them.

One of the eviction notices read: “You are given seven days’ notice to vacate Heany Junction Farm … You are violating section 3 of the Gazetted Lands Act, chapter 20:28, in that you are occupying the said property without lawful authority. You are hereby, given an eviction notice and notice to vacate the property on or before May 30, 2019. Failure to vacate will result in your arrest and prosecution…”

In a letter dated May 20, the villagers said the 2017 court order that blocked their eviction still stood.

“On May 17, you served notices of vacation to 56 of the 122 settlers… at Heany Junction Farm, Umguza. In terms of the eviction notice you served, you requested that they vacate the property on or before May 30; failure of which they would be prosecuted,” read the letter.

“… we refer you to the judgment granted by Justice [Nicholas] Mathonsi in the matter you lost against our clients on December 14, 2017 under HC 381/17. In terms of the High Court judgment handed down, Ministry of Lands, Ministry of Home Affairs, Commissioner of Police and Sibonginkosi Moyo are interdicted from threatening to evict, attempting to evict, evicting and in any way interfering with the applicants and other occupiers of their homesteads … and from demolishing their homesteads without first seeking and being granted a court order… by a court of competent jurisdiction.”

The lawyer said the ministry’s notice to evict and prosecute the settlers was not only sub judice, but also contemptuous of the High Court order.

According to Mathonsi’s ruling, the settlers were scores of Zanu PF youths who were encouraged to settle at the farm by then Home Affairs minister Obert Mpofu, who was also the legislator for the area.

Mpofu was aware of their occupation of the land and gave them assurance that they were safe. As a result, most of the settlers built permanent homes.

The government has yet to respond to the letter.

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Cohabiting now legally protected 

Source: Cohabiting now legally protected – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019 GUEST COLUMN Miriam Tose Majome  SECTION 40 of the proposed Marriage Bill recognises and protects the rights of unmarried people in cohabiting relationships, known in Shona as kubika mapoto and colloquially as small houses. For the first time in Zimbabwean law, civil partnerships have been […]

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Source: Cohabiting now legally protected – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019

GUEST COLUMN Miriam Tose Majome 

SECTION 40 of the proposed Marriage Bill recognises and protects the rights of unmarried people in cohabiting relationships, known in Shona as kubika mapoto and colloquially as small houses.

For the first time in Zimbabwean law, civil partnerships have been formally recognised as bona fide institutions, adding an interesting and necessary dimension to the development of marriage laws.

This type of living arrangement has long been frowned upon and disregarded as immoral and a social and legal nonentity, but this will be a thing of the past if the Marriage Bill becomes law.

Men and women have always lived together, sharing lives, building families and acquiring property without formalising their relationships into customary or civil marriages.

For some, not getting married is out of choice, while for others it was just the way it had to be. Whatever a couple’s living arrangements, certain rights and obligations accrue to them as a result of that relationship, because they acquire property and have children. Traditionally, people who live together without being married have been discriminated against merely because of that and denied legal protection of their rights.

Since the Constitution was passed in 2013, this is now unconstitutional because Section 56(3) outlaws discrimination based on marital status. Changing the marriage laws was, therefore, necessary in order to align them with this provision.

In the Bill, civil partnerships are specified as only between men and women. Same sex civil partnerships are not recognised in Zimbabwe. It is key that the couple lives or has lived together for an amount of time in a sexual relationship in a genuine domestic arrangement, with a mutual commitment to sharing a common life.

The amount of time the couple would have lived together is not defined, so it is open to argument and perspective what the stated amount of time truly refers to as “living together”.

It is not the intention of the lawmakers to put civil partnerships on the same level with other marriage types, but only to protect the rights of civil partners regarding property and children when the partnership ends. Upon dissolution, property acquired during a civil partnership is distributed in accordance with sections 7 to 11 of the Matrimonial Causes Act [Chapter 5:13], the same provisions used to distribute matrimonial property during divorce.

Just like in a divorce, when a civil partnership ends, a court determining the distribution of property acquired during the partnership considers things like the duration of the partnership/relationship, the degree of financial dependence or interdependence, financial arrangements between the parties and ownership and acquisition of the property.

Accordingly, people who cohabit now also have the same property rights as those legally married, except in matters of inheritance.

It is important to note that protecting the property rights of parties in civil partnerships does not mean giving them automatic shares in the property acquired during the partnership.

Even in civil marriages, there is no automatic entitlement to a spouse’s property, let alone equal shares.

Parties in a marriage and civil partnerships have to prove their claims and entitlement to matrimonial and civil partnership property. Matrimonial and civil partnership property is distributed only on the basis of valid and proved claims.

The Zimbabwean marriage law is and remains out of community of property. It is possible and legal to leave a marriage or civil partnership of whatever duration with nothing, so married people and small houses should not be fooled by this new law. There is no automatic entitlement to someone’s property merely because you lived together in a romantic relationship.

Individual property rights are protected even in marriage and civil partnerships. Parties can buy and own their own property exclusively during marriage and civil partnerships.

For inheritance purposes, the property rights of married people and civil partnership parties differ. Civil partnership parties do not have the same inheritance rights as married people.

In terms of Section 3A, Deceased Estates Succession Act, only surviving spouses in a customary or civil marriage are entitled to inherit the matrimonial house and household contents.

As the law currently stands, in the event of death of one of the civil partners, the surviving civil partner will have to prove his or her entitlement to the property in order to inherit it. If the surviving partner cannot prove entitlement to any property left behind, it will be distributed in terms of a will left behind by the deceased partner.

If there is no will, it will be divided equally among the deceased’s dependants. If the surviving civil partner is officially regarded as a dependent and beneficiary in the deceased partner’s estate, he or she will share the estate property equally, together with any other beneficiaries.

The other significant aspects of the Bill are:

It proposes to merge and reconcile the Marriages Act (Ch 5:11) and Customary Marriages Act (Chapter 5:07) and confer equal property rights to parties of both respective marriages.
It repeals Chapter 22 of the Marriages Act, which had allowed child marriages. Sixteen-year-old girls had been permitted to get married under special consent. The minimum age of marriage is 18 and applies to both sexes, including civil and customary law marriages.

It will be a criminal offence with sanctions of up to five years imprisonment for anyone to facilitate or abet a child marriage.
Chiefs will have the powers of marriage officers

There is more than one version of the Marriage Bill available, but the most authentic one is accessible on http://www.justice.gov.zw/imt/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Draft-MARRIAGES-Bill-Jan-2017-Final.pdf

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‘Zim not ready for urban tollgates’ 

Source: ‘Zim not ready for urban tollgates’ – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019 BY VENERANDA LANGA ZIMBABWE is not yet ready to implement urban tolling, the Transport and Infrastructure minister Joel Biggie Matiza (pictured) has told Parliament. Matiza revealed this during Wednesday’s question and answer session when Umzingwane MP Levi Mayihlome (Zanu PF) asked him […]

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Source: ‘Zim not ready for urban tollgates’ – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019

BY VENERANDA LANGA

ZIMBABWE is not yet ready to implement urban tolling, the Transport and Infrastructure minister Joel Biggie Matiza (pictured) has told Parliament.

Matiza revealed this during Wednesday’s question and answer session when Umzingwane MP Levi Mayihlome (Zanu PF) asked him to explain when urban tollgates would be installed so that the user-pays principle applies.

The introduction of urban tollgates was first mooted during former President Robert Mugabe’s era as part of efforts to raise revenue for the rehabilitation of roads.

“The notion of urban tolling requires a policy position through engagement with key ministries, including the Finance, Local Government as well as other relevant stakeholders,” Matiza said.

“There are a lot of processes involved before implementation. As such, these processes include feasibility studies over and above ascertaining the costs involved and crafting of legal frameworks. Currently, some consultations were made, but the indication is that it is a long way before this can be implemented in Zimbabwe.”

Mayihlome said the burden of tolling fees in the country was being borne by a smaller proportion of the driving population, adding it was questionable that consultations to introduce the tollgates were taking long.

The MP said the urban populace was being relieved of this burden while the rural populace was the one carrying the burden alone as they have to pass through tollgates everyday.

Chegutu West MP Dextor Nduna (Zanu PF) suggested during the same session that there should be a trauma centre at every tollgate to take care of accident victims.

“Tollgates are currently about 100km apart and it can take less than an hour to get from one tollgate to another and it is within that hour that we should try to alleviate the plight of those that are involved in road accidents so that they are attended to early in trauma centres,” Nduna said. Matiza said the ministry was engaged in discussions with the Health ministry to establish either ambulance centres or trauma centres in-between tollgates.

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Brace for mass protests: ZCTU

Source: Brace for mass protests: ZCTU – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019 By Staff Reporter THE Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has warned that it is mobilising for mass action against the current economic crisis if government fails to provide solutions. This comes as nurses at public hospitals have announced plans to go on […]

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Source: Brace for mass protests: ZCTU – NewsDay Zimbabwe May 25, 2019

By Staff Reporter

THE Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has warned that it is mobilising for mass action against the current economic crisis if government fails to provide solutions.

This comes as nurses at public hospitals have announced plans to go on strike in a fortnight if government does not offer them better salaries.

ZCTU secretary-general Japhet Moyo said the current economic situation was untenable as workers were at the receiving end of “failed governance”.

Moyo said the largest labour federation held a general council meeting on Thursday and resolved that unless a national tripartite forum was constituted as a matter of urgency to discuss the challenges bedevilling the country, mass action was inevitable.

“The ZCTU is in the process of consulting structures to get a mandate for mass action in the event that the above issues are not addressed,” he said in a statement issued after the meeting.

ZCTU said that it was demanding, among other issues, that workers be given back their US$ savings that were converted into bond notes by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe when it created the RTGS dollar early this year.

“The ZCTU notes with great concern that notwithstanding the reduction in fuel duty, placing fuel procurement on the interbank market will result in frequent price adjustments, given the rapid depreciation of the real time gross settlement dollar (ZWL$) on both the interbank and parallel markets,” the labour body said.

“The upward adjustments in fuel prices will have knock-on effects on the prices of basic goods and services, worsening the impact of the already depreciating exchange rate on the general level of prices.

Despite the availing of State-controlled buses that are not enough to meet demand, commuters transport fares are now between $2 and $5, and medical aid subscription has tripled, making life “unbearable for most Zimbabweans”, ZCTU said.

Zimbabwe is facing its worst economic crisis in a decade and the January protests called for by the ZCTU after government raised the price of fuel by 150% turned bloody, with 17 people killed by security forces while 200 were left nursing bullet wounds according to human rights groups.

Officials said 1 000 people were arrested during the protests.

The southern African country remains in the throes of a dollar crunch and government raised the price of fuel again this week by 47%, triggering another round of price increases punctuated by the fall of the local RTGS currency on both the official interbank market and the parallel market.

At the end of the day yesterday, the RTGS dollar traded at 4,8 to the greenback and at 7,5 on the parallel market.

“The working people of Zimbabwe have already suffered immensely as inflation rose sharply from 5,4% in September 2018 to 75,9% by April 2019. Wages have failed to keep pace with the inflationary trends,” the labour movement said.

“In addition, pension and other statutory contributions have been severely eroded, compromising applicable benefit payments. For example, with average minimum wages of ZWL$300, against a food poverty line (FPL) of ZWL$295 and a total consumption poverty line (TCPL) of ZWL$873 for a family of five in April 2019, it is evident that such wages are below survival levels, reducing most workers to the working poor. That is why the ZCTU has been demanding a minimum wage of US$600,” the statement read.

“The ZCTU demands that an urgent Tripartite Negotiation Forum be convened to discuss the State of the economy and the way forward. Contrary to the Constitution, this government has a tendency of announcing polices without consultations as required by section 13(2) of the Constitution. We reserve the right to approach the courts for redress.”

According to a statement from the Zimbabwe Nurses Association, the union has given a notice to strike after 14 days if government does not address their concerns.

The nurses want, among other issues, a review of their salaries, flexible working hours, a vehicle loan scheme and an improved working environment.

“Having failed to find a common position with the employer a deadlock has been declared. We are, therefore, issuing a notice of intent to embark on an industrial action in the next 14 days if our grievances are not addressed,” a statement from the nurses read.

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