Biti’s aides acquitted on border jumping charges 

Source: Biti’s aides acquitted on border jumping charges – NewsDay Zimbabwe June 3, 2019 BY SILAS NKALA MDC vice-president Tendai Biti’s three aides, who were accused of border jumping following the July 30, 2018 disputed polls, have been acquitted by Karoi magistrate Sam Chitumwa. Biti’s lawyer Nqobizitha Mahole Mlilo and two of the opposition legislator’s […]

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Source: Biti’s aides acquitted on border jumping charges – NewsDay Zimbabwe June 3, 2019

BY SILAS NKALA

MDC vice-president Tendai Biti’s three aides, who were accused of border jumping following the July 30, 2018 disputed polls, have been acquitted by Karoi magistrate Sam Chitumwa.

Biti’s lawyer Nqobizitha Mahole Mlilo and two of the opposition legislator’s aides, Clever Rambanepasi and Tawanda Blessing Chitekwe, had been on trial on charges of failing to present themselves to an immigration official as defined in the Immigration Act.

But Chitumwa on Friday found Mlilo, Rambanepasi and Chitekwe not guilty at the close of the State case and acquitted them.

The magistrate ruled that the State had failed to disprove the trio’s defence that they were asylum seekers when they left the country going to Zambia at the time when Biti was hounded out of Zimbabwe by State security agents.

Chitumwa also ruled that in the absence of evidence by the State supporting its argument that the trio was not seeking asylum, there was no basis to put them to their defence.

Mlilo, Rambanepasi and Chitekwe, who were out of custody on $100 bail each, were arrested together with Biti and charged with contravening the country’s immigration laws after they allegedly failed to present themselves to immigration authorities when they left Zimbabwe bound for Zambia on August 8, 2018.

Prosecutors claimed that the trio, represented by Jeremiah Bamu, connived at Chirundu One-Stop Border Post in Mashonaland West province to evade immigration clearance procedures to cross into Zambia.

They were arrested by officials from the Zimbabwean side of the border post.

The State had claimed that the trio failed to produce passports to both immigration authorities from Zambia and Zimbabwe to validate their exit and entry.

In denying the charge, the trio argued that the charge cited by the State of failing to present oneself to an immigration officer does not apply to asylum seekers, such as Biti and his lawyer and aides.

Bamu told the magistrate that his clients were abducted from Zambia by Zimbabwean authorities.

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Earthquake shakes Kariba 

Source: Earthquake shakes Kariba | The Herald June 3, 2019 The Kariba Dam wall Oliver Kazunga Bulawayo Bureau THE Meteorological Services Department (MSD) has confirmed that a moderate earthquake measuring 3,9 in magnitude was experienced in Kariba, Mashonaland West, on Saturday and no injuries were recorded. Responding to questions from The Chronicle yesterday, a seismologist […]

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Source: Earthquake shakes Kariba | The Herald June 3, 2019

Earthquake shakes KaribaThe Kariba Dam wall

Oliver Kazunga Bulawayo Bureau
THE Meteorological Services Department (MSD) has confirmed that a moderate earthquake measuring 3,9 in magnitude was experienced in Kariba, Mashonaland West, on Saturday and no injuries were recorded.

Responding to questions from The Chronicle yesterday, a seismologist at the Bulawayo MSD, Mr Kwangwari Marimira, said most of the earth tremors which occur in the mid-Zambezi basin under which Lake Kariba falls, are called reservoir-induced earthquakes.

“An earthquake of magnitude 3,9 was experienced in Kariba on the 1st of June 2019 at 10:28 UTC and the local time was 12:28PM. The reports that we obtained from our personnel at Kariba Meteorological Office indicate that there were no casualties or injuries that were recorded. This was a moderate earthquake,” he said.

The earth tremor was felt in Kariba and surrounding areas.

“The epicentre of the earthquake was determined to be about: Longitude 16,770S and latitude 28,633E. The personnel at our Kariba Meteorological Office confirmed the shaking in Kariba as well as surrounding areas,” he said.

Mr Marimira said a number of people in Kariba felt the shaking and rumbling that occurred.

He said this was not the first time for Kariba to register earth tremors.

“The impoundment of Kariba Dam also contributes to seismicity in the area. The largest earthquake to be recorded in Zimbabwe occurred at Kariba Dam in 1963 and had a magnitude of 6,3.

“It occurred after the impoundment of the dam and most earthquakes that occur in this area are attributed to the dam (reservoir). There have been several other earthquakes that were recorded and some of them were felt in and around the area of Kariba,” said Mr Marimira.

He said during an earthquake people should move as little as possible to avoid injuries.

“If indoors, watch for falling plaster, bricks, light fixtures, high bookcases, and other furniture. Stay away from windows, mirrors and chimneys. If in danger, get under a table, desk, or bed; in a corner away from windows; or in a strong doorway. And if in a high-rise office building, get under a desk and do not dash for exits,” he said.

After the earthquake, victims are required to apply first aid or seek medical help for injured people as well as avoiding fallen power lines or objects that would have come in contact with fallen wires.

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Govt warns ministries charging in US$

Source: Govt warns ministries charging in US$ | Newsday (News) By Farai Matiashe President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s embattled government has warned its ministries charging goods and services in United States dollars or equivalent RTGS dollars interbank rate to stop the practice forthwith. In a statement, the Finance ministry said such a practice was against the prescriptions […]

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Source: Govt warns ministries charging in US$ | Newsday (News)

By Farai Matiashe

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s embattled government has warned its ministries charging goods and services in United States dollars or equivalent RTGS dollars interbank rate to stop the practice forthwith.

In a statement, the Finance ministry said such a practice was against the prescriptions set by Treasury.

This came after government agencies and a department in the Lands ministry last week indicated that they would be charging their goods and services in US dollars or the prevailing interbank rate.

The US$-RTGS interbank rate is at 5,2, which is less than the parallel black market rate of 7,8 to the US$.

“Treasury notes that government ministries, departments and agencies area demanding payment for goods and or services rendered in foreign currency or the equivalent in RTGS$ at the prevailing interbank rate,” part of the statement by the Finance ministry read.

“It is important to note that Treasury has not approved any charges to the prevailing levels of fees and payment modalities. Thus, government fees, charges and levies remain at the approved RTGS$ that were formally communicated to each ministry, department agency.”

The ministry said they had not authorised such pricing systems and what the ministries were doing was illegal in terms of the law.

“Section 78(1)(r) of the public finance management act (CAP 22:19) empowers Treasury to prescribe or issue instructions or directions to ministries, whether individually or collectively, concerning the determination of any scales of fees, other charges or rates relating to revenue accruing to the consolidated revenue fund,” the statement continued.

The Finance ministry said notwithstanding the current trends where services providers are unliterary reviewing prices of goods and services, government remains committed to the provision of services at cost recovery levels cognisant of the need to ensure affordability and accessibility to the general public.

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Zim on right path, says IMF

Source: Zim on right path, says IMF | The Herald June 3, 2019 Africa Moyo Deputy News Editor The work being done by Government to turnaround the economy in line with the aspirations of the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) have been recognised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), with market watchers saying the reforms are […]

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Source: Zim on right path, says IMF | The Herald June 3, 2019

Zim on right path, says IMF

Africa Moyo Deputy News Editor
The work being done by Government to turnaround the economy in line with the aspirations of the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) have been recognised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), with market watchers saying the reforms are there for “everyone to see”.

The IMF’s observation comes after United States of America Ambassador to Zimbabwe Brian Nichols said the economy will recover, but cautioned it won’t happen “overnight”.

Government has implored citizens to bear with it as the reforms under the TSP take root, with massive economic take-off expected later on.

Last week Friday, the IMF said Government had “tightened fiscal stance” and introduced a softer currency, the RTGS dollar, which industrialists contend will be a game-changer to their operations since it was expensive to use the US dollar for retooling, production and paying salaries.

Said the IMF: “Significant economic reforms underway: the new Government that was sworn into office following the July 2018 elections, tightened the fiscal stance since September 2018 and introduced a new domestic currency (the RTGS dollar) in February 2019.

“The authorities are also advancing on the structural reforms as elaborated in their Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP), which seeks to achieve macroeconomic stability and aims at reforming and privatising State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs), addressing corruption in procurement and revenue administration, and promoting private sector investment by improving the business climate.”

Government has requested a Staff Monitored Programme (SMP) covering the period May 15, 2019 to March 15, 2020.

The IMF says it “supports this request”, which would assist authorities to implement key reforms outlined in the TSP, and “help Zimbabwe build a track record of sound economic policies as it seeks to normalise relations with external creditors”.

Economist Mr Persistence Gwanyanya told The Herald last night that the IMF’s perspectives on Zimbabwe show that “everybody is agreed in principle” that a lot is being done to reform the fiscal front.

“We did exactly what we had agreed with IMF and for the institution to agree to an extension of the SMP is a good gesture as it shows that something is being done well in the country,” said Mr Gwanyanya.

“We have done certain strides in foreign currency generation and I hear that we now have about US$800 million in the nostro foreign currency accounts.

“But the challenge is that the money is not on the interbank market, which means the market still has challenges. We need to address those challenges and make it work efficiently because everything (fuel availability and prices, among others) is hinged on the interbank.”

However, he noted that the IMF’s acceptance to provide technical assistance to Zimbabwe is not financial assistance, “but assistance regarding identification of key economic imperatives and how to address the same”.

“It essentially means IMF shall work with our Government and agree on certain economic measure and their implementation to get out of economic challenges,” said Mr Gwanyanya.

Ambassador Nichols tweeted last week that; “Zimbabwe has tremendous potential, wonderful human capital . . . but you can’t fix two decades of failed policies overnight.

Mr Nichols

“The IMF staff monitoring program and TSP are the right way forward to get Zimbabwe back on its feet,” said Ambassador Nichols.

The TSP — which runs from October 2018 to December 2020 — prioritises fiscal consolidation, economic stabilisation, and stimulation of growth and employment creation.

Adoption and implementation of prudent fiscal and complementary monetary policies is expected to bring back investor confidence, and stabilise the macroeconomic environment that is conducive for the opening up of more businesses.

The TSP outlines policies, strategies and projects that guide the country’s social and economic development interventions up to December 2020, simultaneously targeting immediate quick-wins and laying a robust base for economic growth for the period 2021-2030.

Economic growth envisaged during the TSP period will be driven by the private sector, with Government facilitating a supportive macro-economic and business environment.

Focus is on value addition and beneficiation to realise higher value exports, and cushioning the economy from the vagaries of international commodity price fluctuations associated with over-dependence on export of raw commodities.

Success of TSP does not only depend on Government efforts alone, but also on a coordinated collaborative multi-stakeholder approach if the country was to overcome and redress the underlying challenges arising from economic fragility, joblessness, inequality and poverty.

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Mining edges towards value addition

Source: Mining edges towards value addition | The Herald June 3, 2019 Africa Moyo Deputy News Editor THE mining industry has reaffirmed support for Government’s aspiration to value add and beneficiate local minerals, as opposed to exporting raw materials, in a bid to generate more revenue for the country. Last year, the country generated about […]

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Source: Mining edges towards value addition | The Herald June 3, 2019

Mining edges towards value addition

Africa Moyo Deputy News Editor
THE mining industry has reaffirmed support for Government’s aspiration to value add and beneficiate local minerals, as opposed to exporting raw materials, in a bid to generate more revenue for the country.

Last year, the country generated about US$3,4 billion from minerals, but experts insist that if more minerals were to be value added and beneficiated, more revenue would have been raked in.

Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe’s immediate past president Mr Batirai Manhando told delegates who included President Mnangagwa during the official opening of the Zimbabwe Annual Mining Conference on Friday, that miners are in full support of the beneficiation agenda.

Already, there are two smelters in the country following the commissioning of the $62 million Unki Mines smelter by President Mnangagwa on May 16.

Zimplats has had a smelter at Selous since 2000.

Said Mr Manhando: “The Chamber of Mines supports Government’s position on value addition and beneficiation. Our members continue to demonstrate support for this policy as reflected by the Unki Mines smelter that was officially opened by Your Excellency the President sometime this month (last month).

“Our mining industry is poised for rapid beneficiation and value addition. We will continue to work with Government to align and expedite achievement of the beneficiation targets and milestones.”

The smelter, a Tenova Hatch hybrid with a furnace rating of 8MW, has an annual smelting capacity of 61 000 tonnes per annum.

Government says value addition is necessary as it not only increases revenue, but also brings technology to Zimbabweans while the country also satisfies itself that all by-products coming out of minerals are reached locally before going abroad, especially South Africa.

Beneficiation is also seen as critical in creating value, employment and accelerating industrial development.

Employment creation is central to Government’s plans as it seeks to attain an upper middle income status under Vision 2030.

Under this ambitious plan, Government wants to ensure citizens have decent jobs and a per capita income of US$3 500.

Mr Manhando said miners have had joy in working with the Second Republic, which has established a platform for engagement.

“Chamber of Mines commends Government for creating an environment that allows for constructive engagement on matters that affect stakeholders in the mining value chain.

“The Chamber of Mines has been accorded access to all arms of Government including interface with His Excellency the President (Mnangagwa).

“Such an environment ensures that all issues that undermine viability or growth are resolved pro-actively with urgency. With mutual trust and common vision, our mining industry is destined for success,” he said.

He added that the mining sector is a key pillar the country’s economic transformation and the attainment of Vision 2030, but only if an enabling environment is created through favourable policies.

Mr Manhando also said the sector required US$14 billion in the next five years to ramp production.

The mining sector currently contributes in excess of 15 percent to nominal GDP, more than 65 percent to national exports, and around 12 percent of the fiscal revenue.

In addition, the industry attracts more than 50 percent of foreign direct investment and creates 45 000 direct jobs and over 100 000 jobs in the artisanal and small-scale sector.

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DON’T DABBLE IN POLITICS : WADYAJENA WARNS COTTCO

Gokwe-Nembudziya MP (Zanu PF) and chair of the
Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Justice Mayor Wadyajena, has warned the
Cotton Company of Zimbabwe against dabbling in politics at the expense of
service delivery.

Wadyajena told a parliamenta…

Gokwe-Nembudziya MP (Zanu PF) and chair of the Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Justice Mayor Wadyajena, has warned the Cotton Company of Zimbabwe against dabbling in politics at the expense of service delivery. Wadyajena told a parliamentary committee workshop organised by Cottco in Kariba that the company should avoid being used to drive a political agenda in rural areas, but thrive

Media reforms on course – Govt

The Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services is finalising the repeal of some media […]

The Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services is finalising the repeal of some media [...]

WAR VETS JEER ZANU PF MP

Mutoko North legislator Rambidzai Nyabote (Zanu PF) was
recently booed by a group of war veterans, who accused him of siding with
embattled Zanu PF Mashonaland East political commissar Herbert Shumbamhini, who
has lost favour of the ex-freedom fighte…

Mutoko North legislator Rambidzai Nyabote (Zanu PF) was recently booed by a group of war veterans, who accused him of siding with embattled Zanu PF Mashonaland East political commissar Herbert Shumbamhini, who has lost favour of the ex-freedom fighters.  At a fractitious meeting held at Mutoko Centre presided by Zanu PF provincial chairperson Joel Biggie Matiza, Nyabote was reportedly booed

DABENGWA DIED A BITTER MAN

THE late liberation war icon and national hero Dumiso
Dabengwa died a bitter man after his push for a national transitional authority
(NTA) to run government business following former President Robert Mugabe’s
ouster fell flat in November 2017. 

Z…

THE late liberation war icon and national hero Dumiso Dabengwa died a bitter man after his push for a national transitional authority (NTA) to run government business following former President Robert Mugabe’s ouster fell flat in November 2017.  Zapu secretary-general, Strike Mnkandla told mourners at Dabengwa’s burial in Ntabazinduna on Saturday that the Zapu leader tried without success to