latest from South Africa

A letter has been leaked in South  Africa against migrants from Zimbabwe,  Nigeria and Pakistan. A demonstration has been organised for 24 February 2017 @ 11am Paul Kruger hall. There is growing fear that something more sinister might be brewing unnoticed. A lot of speculation is going on about the impacts of such meetings and gatherings. Previously events like this have led to xenophobic attacks on migrants with a lot of people dying and some getting injured. In the last xenophobic attacks the army has been called in to quell the riots. Foreigners are being encouraged to be vigilant especially on days leading to that day.

Cross Cultural fun goes viral

A teenager white Zimbabwean and their maid who lives in Harare has been recorded in a video while dancing to a popular local singer Jah Praise and it has gone viral. The reason for this video going viral is simply because the fellow young man was white and listening and dancing to local language music. Usually black Zimbabweans don’t realize that we all grew up exposed to the same environment so we are all at equal par and no-one should be surprised. The video is very fun and a lot of people have enjoyed it so far.

Truck crashes 2 die, but noone helps

A crash which happened in Harare in the suburb of Glen-view 3 has left 2 drivers dead. However there is something sinister that was reported by one of the witnesses. When the truck lost control at a curve it plunged into an abandoned market place and rolled over upside down. 2 people in the truck died on the scene, however before the emergency services could arrive people started looting, while no one even looked to see if the drivers were okay. A lot of drinks were looted by pedestrians and people from neighboring houses. No-one was even worried about the drivers.  No-one helped them at all and they died on the scene.

Graduates in Zimbabwe doing it tough!!!

In Zimbabwe like no other country, you can be a graduate with masters degree, honors degree or phd degree but this will not full-proof you from the wrath of the poverty due to lack of jobs. The political climate has long been preventing the growth of the economy and this resulted in many companies closing and hence therefore no jobs for the graduates. Many graduates are now joining the rest when it comes to surviving means by selling firewood on the streets. this practice is called vending in Zimbabwe.

Over 100 people died overnight trying to cross into South Africa to escape political violence and poverty

 

 

Over a hundred people have drowned overnight while trying to cross the Limpopo river into South Africa. A lot of people have risked their life to cross the river due to escalating political violence in Zimbabwe. One individual who did not want to be mentioned had reported that his house was burnt completely after being accused of being a corroborator of the MDC party, he went on to say that the Zanu PF youths destroyed everything and the only reason why he survived was that he was not in the house at the time. The family went to a late-night church service when the youths came. He also stated he was disturbed by these events and he and his family successfully crossed the border, the gentlemen also stated that he is sure that he is on the wanted list and relocating would mean a life on the run. The only way he could be safe was to cross the border. However many who tried to do the same did not afford to hire a boat so they tried to cross the river by swimming and this proved too much for many. Bodies washed on the other side of the border in South Africa. This has come as the political violence has exponentially increased as we go towards the 2018 elections. The official body count has not yet been determined by it is known that over a 100 people have died overnight.

Granny claims she eats dead people’s flesh

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An unidentified grandmother has appeared on video claiming she eats dead people. This is shocking but due to the strong grassroots cultural practice it may not be surprising. In Zimbabwe , cases of witchcraft are so widely often spoken about behind closed doors, however this is the first time someone has come out publicly claiming they practice witchcraft. I believe the people who are neighbors to this lady will be terrified.

Terrible accident near Beitbridge: Uburn Connect and Commuter Ominibus

Just in there has been a terrible accident between a bus and a commuter omnibus.  It was a head-on collision and it is reported several scores of people have died. Police and ambulance have already arrived at the scene and several survivors have been taken to the beitbridge hospital. Death was toll was initially reported to be at 17. This is the second accident involving an Urbun Connect bus in a month. The accident has been caused by poor roads according to reports from passengers.  One unidentified passenger has spoken to news-crew on the ground that the driver swerved trying to avoid a big pothole and lost control of the bus and then collided with a commuter-omnibus head on. This is very bad news for the families who are still in the process of getting the news about their loved-ones.

Save River Causes Havoc

With Save river overflowing due to recent heavy raifall, it has resulted in the river cutting off roads.Many people have bern left stranded on either side of the river. Some people in the region use desperate methods to try cross the river. Many have lost their lives in this way but still many people try to gamble with their lives. This footage was taken last week at Save river crossing  near Marange and submitted to us. This maybe a reminder fot people that they should never try cross a river when its full.

Zimbabweans stranded at Limpopo river didn’t make it to Xmas

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If your relative who lives in South Africa did not make it to Christmas back home, this summer, it is probably because Limpopo river had punched above its weight this summer. There has been a lot of rainfall in the Limpopo region and this has resulted  in the river overflowing making it impossible for anyone to cross unless in a boat which is still very dangerous due to fast moving current and presence of crocodiles. Many Zimbabweans go to South Africa before summer rainfall and usually cross the river when there is barely any water making it easier to border jump. However this summer its a different situation for those used to cross the border illegally as there is so much rainfall. Many Zimbabweans who hoped to spend Xmass have been utterly dissapointed by the rise of the river.

LAND REFORMS IN ZIMBABWE – SUCCESS OR FAILURE

download2Land reforms in Zimbabwe where white minority rule and landownership by white farmers, were synonymous ended in 1980, with the signing of the Lancaster House Agreement, on December 21st 1979.download ARQ 2016 movie now

Though there was a disproportionate distribution of land between the minority whites and majority blacks the economy was an integration of both communities prior to1980, where the white dominated commercial sector accounted for more that 30% of the total workforce whilst they also controlled 40% of all exports.

Agricultural commercial exports were mainly high yield hybrid maize, cotton, coffee, tobacco and sugarcane which were grown in large farms by landowning white farmers.

The Lancaster House Agreement involved the British government to finance half of the cost of land transfer, subject to mutual agreement between whites and blacks.

In the late 1990’s the Tony Blair government reneged on the agreement due to lack of funds and it resulted in all hell breaking loose in Zimbabwe with Robert Mugabe resorting to forcible eviction of whites and distributing their lands among the blacks, who knew nothing much about land management.

This naturally created a domino effect which Zimbabwe has still to recover from, with the total land reform now in shambles, just like the economy.

WHAT REALLY HAPPENED TO ITAI DZAMARA?

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Pro democracy activist Itai Dzamara was abducted by armed goons of the corrupt Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe on March 9th 2015, whilst he was at his local barbershop waiting to get his hair cut.

He was not heard from nor was there any intimation from the security authorities as to why he was being held and the charges against him, which shows that the abduction was politically motivated.

The relevant authorities drew a blank when his name was mentioned to the various spokesmen representing the different arms of the government security apparatus which are just extensions of the despotic rule of the nonagenarian Robert Mugabe.trailer film Ant-Man

There is no official statement as to what happened to Itai Dzamara and every lead that activists of his “Occupy Africa Unity Square” have received has drawn a blank, whilst the government keeps mum.Watch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)

The Itai Dzamara abduction is a thorn in Mugabe’s side and is slowly but gradually turning out to become an issue that the President who has ruled undemocratically for 36 years would not be able to hold back when elections are held next.

But elections have been marred with accusations of vote rigging and whether Itai Dzamara would bring down Mugabe from wherever he is only time will tell.

NIKUV – WHAT WE KNOW OF THE 2013 ZIMBABWE ELECTIONS

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The question on every right thinking patriotic Zimbabwean is why NIKUV International Projects or NIP the Israeli security company with a dubious track record in Zimbabwe and elsewhere in the world was paid a staggering amount of more than US $ 10 Million by the Zimbabwe Register General’s office under the notorious Robert Mugabe stooge, Tobaiwa Mudede.

When journalists questioned Mudede at a press briefing he abruptly terminated the questioning and later delivered a short curt note to one of the persisting journalists that he was not obliged to discuss the matter further.

Probably corrupt Tobaiwa Mudede has forgotten that this colossal amount of money is not his heirloom but the lawful money of every Zimbabwean living and yet to be born.

It is widely discussed discreetly of course, that this money paid to NIP was a gratuity for their hand in rigging the 2013 vote where Robert Mugabe won a landslide victory when everyone watching it closely expected Robert Mugabe to meet his waterloo at that election.

How NIP helped Robert Mugabe is now well known and is the hot topic in the country and whether their continued presence in Zimbabwe is to again prop up Mugabe at the next election is anybody’s guess.

SUPPRESSION OF PRESS FREEDOM IN ZIMBABWE

download51 download5Zimbabwe under the dictatorial rule of nonagenarian Robert Mugabe is considered a pariah state in the eyes of the world and is shunned by all right thinking nations.

Mugabe’s tight grip on power has been possible mainly due to his suppression of the press and violently curbing any adverse comments being written from within.

The 1992 abduction and subsequent murder of popular journalist Edward Chikomba has left journalists in a trance and their self imposed censorship within Zimbabwe, is evidence that they know, they are being watched closely by the authorities and a word out of line could bring them the same fate too.

Robert Mugabe like all other dictators who have ruled their countries with “jack boot democracy” knows very well that it is the press that can turn the tide against him, hence his systematic suppression by threats, coercion and even assault of those journalists who do not write rosy things about his government.

Having ruled Zimbabwe for 36 years he is still very much in power and has no intentions of relinquishing it and his only hope to remain at the helm is to keep dissent by journalists at bay at any cost, even when the world community has shunned him away.download full movie A

 

WHAT’S NEXT FOR ZIMBABWE AT THE 2018 ELECTIONS

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Corrupt dictator nonagenarian Robert Mugabe is not getting any younger and no amount of witchcraft could possibly prolong his life’s ambition at tremendous cost to the nation to reach the magical milestone of remaining as President in his impoverished nation at the ripe age of 100 years.

Zimbabwe was a bountiful and flourishing nation prior to Robert Mugabe taking over the reins, though it reeked with a policy of apartheid under white minority rule, but today it has fallen into a bottomless abyss, from where it would find it difficult to crawl back up.

The drought forecasted in 2017, the never ending political unrest spilling over to every street in Harare and elsewhere, inflation just below the sky and the latest gimmick by the government to issue, bond notes instead of currency notes, have all boomeranged on Robert Mugabe.

There is no law and order with most officials corrupt to the core after 36 years of despotic rule and long bank queues being the order of the day for every citizen who is struggling to make ends meet whilst Mugabe is living an Emperors lifestyle cocooned in the Presidential Palace.

What the 2018 elections would bring “ONLY TIME WILL TELL”.

FRAGMENTED OPPOSITION PARTIES CANNOT WIN THE 2018 ELECTION

c148b5c5-67e8-41ac-86c5-0c849a75e92d_w987_r1_sjoice-mujuru-page-2The present relentless unrest seen in the streets of Harare the capital city of Zimbabwe, the once food basket of the continent of Africa is leaderless but nurtured by a more powerful tool, the social media.

There is no proper leadership to this opposition other than the coordination through the social media which has become a very powerful tool, and there is every possibility that it could be blocked by the authorities to sabotage the growing dissent.

If that happens, what would become of all the hue and cry to topple the despotic regime is anybody’s guess and which could peter out and give some respite to the regime because there is no leadership to this campaign.

Whether this could propel anybody to power is another matter because there is no contender at the moment, who has the backing of the majority, the charisma and leadership qualities to take over from Robert Mugabe whose tyrannical rule is slowly sinking into the abyss he himself has created.

The present fragmented opposition could be caught unawares if Mugabe decides to go for a snap election which could consolidate his power in the eyes of the world whatever the internal strife is within the country

INTRODUCTION OF BOND NOTES AS CURRENCY A DISASTER FOR ZIMBABWE

imageAfter 36 years of mismanaging the economy the autocratic President of Zimbabwe the 92 year old Robert Mugabe is at a financial crossroad, grasping the last straw that he thinks would keep the country afloat.
His government’s financial disciplines, if there were any, has taken the country and it’s people into a deep abyss from which crawling back would need a new star on the horizon which in the near future looks nowhere to be seen even in the Universe.
Whilst Mugabe has not indicated any signs of relinquishing power, or for that matter even grooming his successor the recent introduction of bond notes have aggravated the financial crisis further.
The official exchange rate with the US dollar is 1:1 for the bond notes, but what is prevalent in the streets is something in complete contrast.
Inflation is mind boggling and has gone through the roof of those sitting to calculate it and Mugabe’s tryst with the new bond notes would be like his experiment with the now discontinued Zimbabwe dollar that was available in one hundred Trillion (100,000,000,000,000/=) denominations.
What financial future Zimbabwe would have in the last leg of Mugabe rule and after, ONLY TIME WILL TELL, but without doubt whichever way the country goe

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THE POTENTIAL OF A CIVIL WAR IF ROBERT MUGABE DIES IN POWER WITHOUT RESOLVING THE SUCCESSION ISSUE

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The internecine warring within the ZANU-PF the ruling party in Zimbabwe, the former Republic of Rhodesia has prompted President Robert Mugabe who has ruled the country with an iron fist for the 36 years since they were released from white bondage under the former apartheid regime, to categorically state that his successor would be elected democratically and his wife would not be the automatic choice to succeed him.
Zimbabwe was born in 1980 after years of armed struggle and political instability created by it’s supporters to pressure the ouster of white minority rule and after achieving that goal it has been Robert Mugabe who has held the country together, though most of the time on the fringes of democracy.
Robert Mugabe at the ripe age of 92 years is not getting any younger and it is not him to decide how long he would live, being a ruthless guerilla leader and now a seasoned senior politician, one of the last in the world, to know what is best for his country after he passes on.
What he has up his sleeve nobody will know but what is clear is that his death without a successor in place is definitely going to take Zimbabwe on another blood bath.

Extortion by ZRP on the rise as economy tightens….

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POLICE EXTORTION IN ZIMBABWE
Bribery, corruption, extortion and other influences to obtain favorable conditions, patronage, policing, decisions and judgements among many other ills are a human trait today and practiced in every country around the world even in the hallowed precincts of reputed institutions which are numerous to write about here.
In this context the extortion rings run within the Zimbabwe Republic Police wouldn’t be surprising but the ills befitting this organization that just sprung out of the hated anti-apartheid revolution and baptized with fire in 1980 is today unprecedented.
The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) the successor to the British South Africa Police (BSAP) was christened on the wrong foot with a novice in the enforcement of law and order being propelled to the important and sensitive post of the Commissioner General who was just but a lowly police constable joining the now defunct BSAP in 1960.
He had to serve his political masters who placed him at the helm and what followed was a lesson in disaster which would go down in the annals of Zimbabwe police history as the bone of contention that had more or less brought the country to be called a “failed pariah state” in the modern world.
Various reports and surveys conducted within the Zimbabwe Republic Police, discreetly of course, does not bode well for the well being of the organization.
The most blatant reason is the general working conditions of the rank and file who are poorly paid, forced into unhealthy living conditions, the absence of regular and targeted training, and the lack of modern resources to carry out their tasks which in itself are monumental due to the high rise in crime.
Hence bribery and extortion is a part and parcel of their daily chores without which the police personnel would not be able to meet ends when they go home to their loved ones.
Police extortion is so obviously prevalent that the senior officers who are also “on the take” turning a blind eye or also having their “palms oiled” by those who want umpteen favors to go about their lawless and nefarious activities.
Once in a way some low constable or a senior high ranking officer are taken in for extortion and charged but a closer analysis of the incident would have politically motivated undertones to it.
Extortion and bribery mostly go undetected due to the lack of modern technology in place in important areas where the opportunities for such activities are rampant.
Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) is missed badly in these sensitive areas and the “powers that be” do not want to install them due to reasons that are blatantly very clear.
The top is corrupt hence going behind small mice could “upset the apple cart” hence the hesitancy to enforce and prosecute those below in rank, as they would surely “spill the beans”.
A concerted effort would need to be initiated if extortion is to be eradicated from the Zimbabwe Republic Police but who would “bell the cat” is another matter.

Zimbabwe Republic Police -Corruption a terminal Cancer for Zimbabwe

POLICE CORRUPTION IN ZIMBABWE
Every country in the world has their own Police force to keep a check on Law and Order with mandates to prevent, investigate and prosecute those who fall foul of the law.
The organization mandated to do so under the apartheid regime of the former Republic of Rhodesia, was the British South Africa Police (BSAP), the predecessor of the present Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP).
Baptism with fire
The Zimbabwe Republic Police had a very sudden baptism with fire like none other Police force in any other country and this could be the reason that it is rife with nepotism, political interference, bribery and corruption among many other minuses, today.
The year 1980 brought the sudden baptism we talk about when the apartheid regime was dislodged in a popular vote and the majority black community was given the reins to rule the country which saw an overall change in all spheres of public life, government structure and civil administration and in the rank and file of the Police force among many other social and political upheavals.
The Zimbabwe Republic Police was born out of this uncertainty with most senior white police officers being forcibly retired and black “other ranks” being promoted to responsible and sensitive positions overnight, where there should have been a systematic and gradual phasing out, if that was what was desired by the new black government at the helm but it was not.
It would be prudent to note that the British South Africa Police restricted the promotion of black “other ranks” up to the rank of Sub Inspector only and none was granted a Commission to hold commanding positions, hence their training was also limited to what they needed to know and carry out what they were ordered to do.
The pertinent reason for sense and sensibility to be put to the winds was the years of persecution, inhuman treatment of black detainees, and color segregation among other barbaric acts committed under the apartheid regime, which was the time bomb that exploded in the year 1980.
A round peg in a square hole
The crux of this problem would be better defined when considering the appointment of the first black Commissioner General of the Zimbabwe Republic Police Wiridzayi Nguruve, a lowly police constable who had joined the British South Africa Police in 1960 with no command experience, human resources management or law enforcement training and knowledge.
He became a round peg in a square hole and whilst his appointment was politically motivated he had to swear allegiance and be subservient to his political masters who placed him in that predicament.

A bite too big to chew
This sudden elevation to command was too big a bite for the new and first Commissioner General to chew and what followed is the fate of Law & Order in Zimbabwe today.
The rot that began in 1980 is still decaying the very fabric of the Zimbabwe Republic Police more so with a President who has ruled the country since the fall of the apartheid regime with an iron fist where nepotism, bribery and corruption is rife in all spheres of Zimbabwean life and in such a environment, a corrupt Police force is no surprise to any.

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Human rights collapse as military marches ON Exclusive

The number of ordinary people who are abused by military in Zimbabwe is increasing at an alarming rate. The human rights lawyers who are in the country are extremely concerned about this fact. In fact, the lawyers have actively helped hundreds of civil people who were abused by military. Among those people, they even found two children, who were one year and 10 years old respectively.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

Different organizations that exist in Zimbabwe have also paid their attention towards the fact how human rights are being abused within the country. It creates a negative impact about the country in International media. VOA and ZLHR are two such organizations that have paid attention towards the above mentioned fact. As per these organizations, both army and police are not caring about the fundamental rights of humans. On the other hand, it gives an impression that the civil people in Zimbabwe don’t have an idea about their fundamental rights. If people are aware about their rights, they would never allow the army or the police to abuse them. This is something that the government should pay more attention towards. As per the lawyers in Zimbabwe, it seems like the things are not getting better any sooner. As a result, all the lawyers are worried about the situation and they are looking forward to educate people in mass.

As per the lawyers in Zimbabwe, this issue remains a cause for concern. That’s because all the people who belong to the military forces should adhere to the rule of constitutionalism and law as per the new constitution. In fact, it is the responsibility of the military forces to ensure that human rights of civil people are being met, not abused. Unfortunately, it is sad to see them performing their duties the other way round. It is the high time for military to stop harassing civil people in the country, before the tension explodes.

In the recent past, the High Court of Zimbabwe ordered Sydney Sekeramai, who is the Defense Minister of the country to pay $2,000 for one of the political activists in Harare to compensate the loss that was taken place as a result of the abuse by military. Moreover, the police was asked to pay $2,000 for one of the election support network members for a wrongful arrest. Even though the lawyers are struggling hard to ensure the civil rights of humans, it seems that all their efforts are in vain due to the ignorant measures taken by military forces.

The most prominent lawyers in Zimbabwe have realized that they cannot support this fact alone. As a result, they are looking forward to get together as a group and then raise a strong voice against these wrongful acts that are being conducted by military. We hope these efforts would bring positive results and make Zimbabwe a better country to live for all the human beings.

CAPS parade league trophy

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HARARE - Castle Premier Soccer League Champions CAPS United are set to parade their floating trophy to their legion of fans in Harare and Chitungwiza today.?

United were crowned champions last week after fending the challenge of second-placed FC Platinum with a narrow 0-1 victory over Chapugu at Ascot Stadium in Gweru.

The Championship trophy is scheduled to leave CAPS United’s offices in Eastlea at 8am for Mabvuku before heading for Chitungwiza then Machipisa, Mbare before rounding up with  the central business district. 

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In a statement yesterday, CAPS chief executive Cuthbert Chitima appealed to the club’s fans to turn out in their numbers for the parading exercise. 

“CAPS United Football Club would like to advise all its valued stakeholders that there will be a Trophy Parade this Saturday (today)...The trophy will be done in various shopping centres or locations starting in Mabvuku, Chitungwiza, Machipisa, Mbare and finished intensively in the Harare Central Business District,” wrote Chitima.

 “Our institution would like to warmly invite... the supporters, sponsors and all other key stakeholders to be part of the event and join us in showcasing our success.”

United finished their impressive campaign on 63 points two ahead of  Norman Mapeza’s FC Platinum.

The Harare side have also confirmed their participation in the Caf Champions league where South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns are the defending champions.

Lloyd Chitembwe’s side will have to enjoy a short break as he prepares his side for the African Safari which kick off with a strenuous qualifying games.

Chibuku Super Cup winners Ngezi Platinum Stars also confirmed their participation in next year’s Confederations Cup.

‘First Lady, VP regret missing Sulu wedding’

HARARE - First Lady Grace Mugabe and Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa will send their representatives to grace Suluman Chimbetu’s wedding and album launch scheduled for today in Harare.

Orchestra Dendera Kings publicist Joe “Local” Nyamungoma told the Daily News that the two high-profile guests were keen to attend the event but were tied up.

“They were willing to attend but because of commitments, they have opted to send their emissaries,” Nyamungoma said.

Chimbetu will wed Linda Samuriwo, whom he has sired two children with.

The event will also see Sulu unveiling his latest studio album Jamboree. 

The wedding ceremony is pencilled for one of the very large “wedding palaces” Zimbali Gardens in Greendale.
 Jah Prayzah will be the best man, while his wife Rufaro will be the best lady.

 “Apart from being the best man, Jah Prayzah will go on to perform at the wedding and it’s after-party gig slated for Belgravia Sports Club.

 “Some members of the bridal team include Tryson Chimbetu, Franco Slomo, Douglas Chimbetu and Tanaka Sithole, among others,” Nyamungoma said. 

Chimbetu’s eight-track album was recorded at his new studio, Cockpit.

 Contrary to general opinion that the two artistes — Sulu and Jah Prayzah do not see eye to eye — Nyamungoma said the event will demonstrate that they are real brothers.

 “We did not appoint Jah Prayzah to prove a point but we have chosen him because of this brotherly issue.

 “However, the event will also cement their relationship and silence critics.”

  In a previous interview with Chimbetu, he was happy that he has managed to carve his own brand and identity. 

“Though I am the son of Simon Chimbetu, the legend, I am glad that I have managed to distinguish my works from his and fans know me as Sulu,” he said.

 Sulu’s has a number of albums including Ndomusiya Nani (2007), Reverse Deal (2009), Non Stop (2010), Syllabus (2012) and Gunship (2014). 

He is happy that his music commanded a huge following locally and in the region. 

“It is well received in countries such as Malawi, Botswana and Mozambique among others,” he said then.   
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Zim to reform parastatals

HARARE - Zimbabwe has crafted a new framework for the appointment of board members and chief executives at public enterprises in a move aimed at fighting corruption and improve corporate governance.

Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa this week told Parliament that an agent was set up to maintain a database of persons who are suitable to be appointed to State enterprise boards.

“… In terms of the new rules, there is an agency which should maintain a database of persons who are suitable to be appointed to such boards.  Persons to be appointed to the boards should possess relevant skills aptitudes and experience,” he said.

“I have no doubt in my mind that these safeguards will enable ministers to appoint members of boards who are qualified and skilled to perform the tasks demanded by the institutions,” Mnangagwa said, amid indications that State-owned companies remain in the red after recording cumulative losses and net liabilities are in excess of $1 billion in the period to December 2015.

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The Zanu PF’s strongman said the corporate governance and delivery spoken to by the new rules were in line with international best practices.

“The agency will play an important role in the appointment of members of boards and ensure that corporate governance standards are adhered to at all times,” he said.

This comes as National Assembly Speaker Jacob Mudenda recently raised the issue at a recent budget consultative meeting, pointing out that State enterprise boards needed to be vetted by Parliament.

The speaker said Zimbabwe had to take a cue from neighbouring South Africa, and extensively vet all who sit on parastatal boards.

He said leaving the mandate of board appointments to respective ministries had proved ineffective, given most parastatals — which used to make up 60 percent of the economy — were “performing dismally”.

Zimbabwe has over 63 parastatals and according to Auditor-General Midred Chiri, most are in need of restructuring.
State-owned enterprises have come under fire for “strange” appointments to boards with minister’s children, wives and relatives making up most of the members who sit on boards.

Mudenda’s remarks come after President Robert Mugabe’s son-in-law Simba Chikore was recently appointed as chief operating officer of the country’s struggling national airline, Air Zimbabwe, despite questionable credentials and an unclear professional history.

Most parastatals — which mostly rely on Treasury disbursements for survival — have since forced Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa to tighten conditions under which they access money from Treasury.

Chief Justice vacancy  interviews on Monday

HARARE - The Judicial Services Commission (JSC) will hold public interviews on Monday to fill the chief justice (CJ) vacancy.

Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku is retiring from the Bench at the end of February, stepping down from the most powerful position in the judiciary after joining the Supreme Court in March 2001. 

He has reached the 70-year mandatory retirement age.   

The JSC will be conducting public interviews of four candidates seeking appointment as chief justice of Zimbabwe in succession to Chidyausiku. The JSC has said it is looking for a CJ who exudes “competence, integrity and independence”. 

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The post of successor chief justice is likely to be hard fought. 

Those short-listed are Deputy Chief Justice Luke Malaba; Justice Paddington Shadreck Garwe, a judge of the Supreme Court; Justice Rita Tambudzai Makarau, a judge of the Supreme Court and Justice George Mutandwa Chiweshe, the judge-president of the High Court, said to be a hot favourite of the Munhumutapa establishment.

The proceedings, which will be open to members of the public, are scheduled for the Jacaranda Room at the Rainbow Towers Hotel in Harare at 9am on Monday. 

The interviews are an important part of the appointment process for the position of chief justice, as laid down in section 180 of the Constitution.  

The interviews will be conducted by the members of the JSC.

A new Constitution adopted in 2013 which trims President Robert Mugabe’s powers no longer allows the nonagenarian to appoint judges on his own authority. According to the new charter, the public will propose candidates, who will then be interviewed by JSC.

After the interviews, the JSC will then decide on a list of three nominees and submit the list to the president.  This will involve eliminating one of the four candidates. 

The president will then appoint one of the three nominees as chief justice, unless he considers that none of the three is suitable for the post.  In that highly-unlikely event, section 180(3) of the Constitution allows him to require the JSC to submit one further list of three qualified persons, according to legal experts.  

The chief justice also oversees the Con-Court and Supreme Court’s administration and lobbies on the top court’s behalf on matters involving its docket and jurisdiction.

The CJ job also has a political nature, and has a key role in presidential impeachment motions and elections, which are often disputed here. 
There are lingering concerns that some Zimbabwean judges are generally subject to political control. 

In 2008, Mugabe splurged German cars, Japanese SUVs and plasma screen TVs, purchased at the expense of Zimbabwe’s poor and sick, using the monopoly money emerging from the printing presses of the central bank. 

The incoming CJ will also have to head the Con-Court as well until 2023, according to the new Constitution.

Technically, potential assignees that have been seriously bandied about so far include the Judge President Chiweshe and Makarau, the present chairperson of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec), who was the first female judge president of Zimbabwe.

Legal experts argue that using the promotion option, making the deputy CJ Malaba take over, was probably self-evident because experience on the Supreme Court may be helpful in leading it, but his major disadvantage was that he was headed for retirement soon.

Mugabe is likely to make his selection as a matter of political pragmatism, and legal experts claim he is likely to give serious consideration to former Zec chairman Chiweshe, who rolled out an elaborate electoral recovery strategy after Mugabe lost elections to MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai in the historic 2008 presidential polls.

‘Zanu PF politicians financially illiterate’

HARARE - Maverick businessman Phillip Chiyangwa yesterday branded Zanu PF politicians “fools”, bluntly decrying the former liberation party’s policies which he said have ruined business.

The real estate tycoon said his colleagues in Zanu PF were financially illiterate, chasing away investors and eliminating indigenous business while some were being bought with bottles of whiskey while the economy implodes. 

“Cash talk breaks no friendship,” Chiyangwa bellowed at the Affirmative Action Group’s empowerment conference held in Harare yesterday.

“We need a more proactive government, government official, ministers and people in Zanu PF where I am. The problem iripo havazive mari (they do not know money),” he said to uproarious laughter.

“This problem is very serious. Ukauya ukanzi nemunhu ‘bhodhoro rewhiskey, baba vangu, wakutoenda naye nyika ichiparara (Zanu PF politicians are being swayed by bottles of whiskey while the country burns). You cannot take me kupusa kwakaita sei kwekuti Marange igotorwa zvinhu zvigopera tozoziva zvapera. Kupusa kwakaita sei ikoko? (How foolish our politicians are that our diamonds are looted in Marange and we only find out when nothing is left, that is foolishness of the highest order). 

“We operate in a blind way yet Zimbabwe has produced serious business people that ought to be with us but they are now cut outside the country because the country has no vision for satisfying business people who should be here. 

“And sometimes we are even eliminated. I often say Strive Masiyiwa is one of those people and many others.”

Self-exiled Masiyiwa  is the chairman and founder of Econet, a diversified telecommunications group with operations and investments in Africa, Europe, North America, Latin America and the Asia Pacific. 

His business interests also straddle renewable energy, water treatment, Coca Cola bottling, financial services and hospitality; and also serves on a number of international boards.

Chiyangwa demanded that political leaders should not put barriers in front of those trying to get the economy running and make money.
“Right now, we have cash shortages, how do I feel that someone prints a paper, signs it and calls it money?” Chiyangwa said.

“How does that make me feel? For me, I want a situation where our economy is running well. Right now, I am coming from Cameroon (on football business). Each and every one in that country knows and appreciates the value of cash, yet Zimbabwe is much more illiterate. But kupusa (we are daft when it comes to) pacash big time. Big time!”

The businessman, never far from controversy, urged the government to put in place progressive policies that allow for development of the economy.
“A lot of my stands are sold at a deposit of $150 because I want everyone to have a roof over their heads. But you see politicians complaining how did Chiyangwa get all this, ndakaita buck wanga uripi? (when I was making money where were you?).

“I am young man who has made it on my own. I know the road I have walked. I was avoiding these politicians, then I joined them so that I criticise them while I am among them. Haikona kutiza chokwadi uri kundinzwa (don’t run away from the truth). Cash talk breaks no friendship. You (Zanu PF politicians) must address the issues that affect us.” 

The Native Investments Africa Group founder said every businessman should speak against what they felt was an uneven playing field, saying no one will be arrested for speaking the truth.

Bus operator faces fresh rape charge

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HARARE - Convicted rapist Simbarashe Gibson, who owns First Class Bus Services, is facing a fresh rape trial on December 7 for allegedly indecently assaulting his sister.

The trial is scheduled for the Harare Magistrates’ Courts. His lawyers are moving to have the charges quashed.

When Gibson, 61, appeared before Harare regional magistrate Bianca Makwande yesterday, his lawyer Tawanda Tandi applied for a postponement on the basis that they were arguing for a review of his placement on remand at the High Court.

Prosecutor Ressie Nyamombe then advised the court that she would make a follow-up on the alleged appeal before trial kicks off on December 7.

 When he initially appeared in court, his lawyer challenged placement on remand on the basis that his arrest and court appearance was unlawful.

In November 2011, Gobson was jailed for 12-years by former regional magistrate Simon Rogers over charges of raping an 11-year-old girl at gunpoint. He has been out of prison on $5 000 bail pending appeal.

In the latest rape charge, the victim claimed Gibson is her cousin and confirmed that she had lodged a report at Makomva Police Station where her statement was recorded.

The rape victim said: “The accused person phoned me to come to the garage at his offices and when I arrived there around 8pm, he asked me to go to his offices and as I sat on the sofa, he produced a silver pistol and ordered me to undress.

“I was shocked and he asked me to go to a bedroom within his office and forced me to commit oral indecencies on his privates, threatening to shoot me at the count of three if I resisted.

“When I vomited, he told me that it was a sign that I was enjoying the act, saying I should not worry since it was my first time. He produced (ejaculated) on my face before ordering me to swallow everything, emphasising that I should lick every drop.”

The court heard that after the rape, Gibson blind-folded his cousin and took her to number 4 Hillside Road in Harare and detained her there from October 9 to 28. The State has notified the court that he will face a further charge of kidnapping for that conduct.

“I was threatened that if I reported the abuse he would frame theft charges against me since I sell tickets at his company. He also told me that he was able to kill me and make me disappear,” added the woman.

Outrage over Nssa running new public health scheme

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HARARE - President Robert Mugabe’s administration must not let the scandal-plagued State-run pension fund, National Social Security Authority (Nssa), run a compulsory scheme requiring all Zimbabweans to access health insurance. The planned move has drawn swift and strong condemnation.

Cabinet has approved the setting up of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) that will give the majority of Zimbabweans, including those in the informal sector and farmers, access to universal healthcare by making government responsible for providing at least an “essential benefits package” for everyone.

Resources for the fund will be collected through a Parliament special tax act, which will decree that all formal employers and their employees in Zimbabwe contribute a percentage of their income.

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The NHIS Bill white paper, approved by Cabinet after it was tabled by Public Service, Labour and Social Services minister Prisca Mupfumira with the backing of her Health and Child Care counterpart David Parirenyatwa, puts the health scheme under the administration of the government pension fund Nssa.

This comes as Nssa — which has 70 percent of its investments in the equities market, has interests in 53 of the 60 companies listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, holding at least 10 percent shareholding in 12 counters — has recently been damned in a 2015 audit report by Deloitte Advisory Services. The audit report revealed that the pension fund’s executives awarded themselves salaries of up to $30 000 per month, housing loans of up to $2 million, and also incurred $10,3 million in tax interest and penalties on payroll-related items.

Nssa in August was forced to hire Elizabeth Chitiga as the new general manager, replacing long-serving CEO James Matiza, who was axed last year in October over the scandal.

There are also concerns over Nssa’s questionable investment policies, which has seen it reporting a 68 percent decline in full-year profit for 2015 after a $93 million asset write-down relating to its Celestial office park in Harare and a doomed Beitbridge hotel project.

There have been concerns that the State-run pension fund overpaid for the Borrowdale office park, while construction costs for the Beitbridge hotel shot up from $17 million when the tender was first flighted, to $49 million upon completion in 2014.

The Mugabe administration’s directive to let Nssa administer the scheme responsible for the health coverage of local citizens has effectively touched off a heated national debate that has reverberated through civil society and government.

Zimbabwe’s largest trade union federation and the Community Working Group on Health have both roundly condemned the government’s planned move, saying Nssa should not be allowed to administer the health fund. 

“It is so disturbing to hear that the government has agreed to the introduction of the National Health Insurance Scheme and that Nssa should administer it,” Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) secretary-general Japhet Moyo said in World Aids Day message on Thursday.

Moyo said workers wanted the National Aids Council (Nac), not Nssa, to administer the NHIS.

“We are not in support of that, instead Nac would be the best as they have an administrative track record in the management of such a scheme, just like the way they have been able to with the Aids Levy which has become a regional if not a global model with a number of countries learning from them.”

The Aids levy was introduced in 1999 and became effective in January 2000 and is bankrolled through a compulsory 3 percent tax levied on workers and employers. 

Conceived in response to the HIV epidemic and meagre government funding, the trust fund has exhibited a unique and substantive result in provision of life-prolonging anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs).

Despite a deflation caused by depressed consumer spending and decreasing external funding, Zimbabwe continues to make encouraging progress in providing access to ARVs for people living with HIV, including pregnant mothers. By the end of 2015, more than  232 000 people — about 40 per cent of those eligible —were receiving HIV treatment, up from only 24 500, or 7 percent, in 2005 and has also supported various community-driven HIV prevention, according to acting Health and Child Care minister Douglas Mombeshora.

Itai Rusike, executive director of the Community Working Group on Health — highlighting the impact of a growing debate that has centred on Nssa being allowed to administer the health fund — said the move was ill-advised given the pension fund’s stained background of giving paltry benefits to pensioners and investing in failed banks. 

Nssa has come under withering criticism for blowing $2,5 million on the now defunct CFX Bank, losing $45 million in the now shuttered Interfin Bank, and splurging $12 million on overpriced starafricacorporation shares and another $1,5 million on Africom Continental.

Rusike also called for Nac, not Nssa, to handle the health scheme, which he described as noble.

“We do not know how far the ministry has consulted with regards to its implementation but we strongly feel Nac should take a lead in its implementation instead of the proposed Nssa,” Rusike said at a Domestic Health Financing forum.

According to official estimates, only 10 percent of Zimbabwe’s residents are covered by private health insurance schemes today.

Although it is unclear how much the required insurance policy will cost, it is estimated patient claims will more than quadruple annually.
The mandatory health insurance move could also spur growth in hospital bed capacity. 

Govt to reintroduce radio lessons

HARARE - Government is set to reintroduce radio lessons to enable students to get supplementary learning in the comfort of their homes.

Education minister Lazurus Dokora said the government is now geared to reintroducing the “school of the air”.

Radio lessons used to cater for the primary and early secondary education of children mostly in remote areas. 

Classes were traditionally conducted by radio, although this is now being replaced by Internet technology. 

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Dokora was responding to a question on Thursday in the Senate by Nyamayabo Mashavakure, a senator representing people living with disabilities, on revival of radio lessons. 

“The short answer is yes. Already, groundwork has been prepared to revive those radio lessons. 

“You know with ICT; we are also looking even to the TV Channel which we are going to get when we go fully digital. 

“One of the channels will be allocated to education and will occupy the morning shift and then our counterparts in Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development will occupy the other shift.  

“So we will use the available channels to reach all learners in the country. That is the only way we can justify our pursuit of equity.

“I think the honourable senator will also be happy to know that even our examining system is sensitive also to the kind of media that the learners use at examination time.”

Dokora said in the last Grade 7 examinations, there was a first batch of candidates who used braille.

“Of course, there are variables that you then introduce in that space, like the duration. They cannot be allocated the same time as the others but we use various channels to reach out to all learners.  The Zimbabwean education system is becoming more inclusive and more sensitive and therefore, more radical in approach.”

According Dokora, the students will attend and write the same examinations.

“If it is secondary, they will also write the same curriculum at O-Level and beyond. That is how we manage these small groups of learners.  

“They are structured into the alternative system which is equally competent and yields the same outcomes for the learners. It is highly individualised and therefore is not dependent on getting teachers deployed in their numbers to take care of 30 kids who are from Grades 0 to Grade 7.  It will not be possible to deploy full time teachers.”

Dokora added that the correspondence education or Open Distance Learning (ODL) is designed to reach out to the isolated learner and was designed originally in colonial times.

ZMDC warned against eviction of villagers

MUTARE - Nine livid human rights groups have warned Mutare’s district administrator against allowing Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZMDC)’s arbitrary relocation of 26 Chiadzwa families to pave way for mining operations.

The rights groups threatened to sue the DA Edgars Seenza in his personal capacity for violating the families’ constitutional rights.

Marange Development Trust; Platform for Youth Development; Arda Transau Relocation Development Trust; Centre for Research and Development; Natural Resource Dialogue of Zimbabwe; Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights; Zimbabwe Human Rights Association; Transparency International-Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association said the Tinoengana villagers were protected from arbitrary eviction by Section 74 of the constitution. 

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The consortium of civic organisations said they were convinced government would not forcibly remove the villagers without consulting them and properly conducting a valuation of their properties as demanded by the constitution.

The families are due for relocation today (December 3).

“It is our firm belief that the ministry of Rural Development, Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and Heritage which is the custodian of communities could not have sanctioned arbitrary and forceful evictions of Chiadzwa villagers. As civil society organisations, we are therefore appalled by the un-Constitutional actions and direct contraventions of the supreme law of the land. 

“We are hereby writing to your office to warn you to stop these illegal, unlawful and unprocedural evictions, failing which will result in us pursuing direct legal action against you in your personal capacity,” reads the letter.

They said Section 74 of the Constitution protects citizens against arbitrary evictions. The Section states that, ‘no person may be evicted from their home, have their home demolished, without an order of court made after considering all relevant circumstances’. 

“It is our firm belief that the government through its ministries, including the parent ministry which your office falls under the ministry of Rural Development, Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and Heritage, upholds the Constitutional values and the spirit of Constitutional founding values of transparency, justice, accountability and responsiveness,” the organisations said. 

They also held a press conference in which they demanded the placing on hold of the 130 people in the 26 affected households until “the process is agreed in consultation with the communities”.

They also want the “immediate cessation of threats and intimidation of villagers by the DA and state security operatives meant to coerce villagers in Tinoengana to agree to forced relocations.”

The civic organisations also want all mining operations in Tinoengana and surrounding villages by ZCDC halted until an environmental impact assessment is conducted in consultation with the communities.

They also want an independent and transparent evaluation of properties and assets of communities; and another independent assessment of destination amenities, consistent with livelihood and welfare upliftment for the displaced if relocation is agreed, as well as a demand for compliance with all constitutional provisions.

The organisations said they were wary of a repeat of previous evictions and relocation of villagers which they said were accompanied by opaque compensation arrangements, and serious disruptions of affected villagers’ livelihoods and way of life.

“Previous evictions of Chiadzwa communities to Arda Transau, in which the villagers were duped to accepting relocation with a nominal $1 000 disturbance allowances, inadequate food handouts, reduced land sizes, inadequate grazing and agricultural land, destruction of livelihoods, inadequate housing, inadequate health facilities, schools and clean, safe and potable water,” they said in the statement. 

They however expressed worry that while the “previous arrangement was conducted in cahoots with foreign-owned companies, the current evictions are being driven by the government of Zimbabwe in violation of the Constitution.”

Industrial diamond extraction in Chiadzwa has led to the displacement of 1 300 families, affecting over 7,000 people in Marange since 2009, they said.

Between 2014 and 2015, there was acknowledgement of fiscal leakages, illicit financial flows, massive corruption, and lack of fiscal transparency resulting in the establishment of ZCDC in 2016.