Among other things, the opinions of a former member of the Zimbabwe Republic Police force. My take on the world in general and one thing in particular - a commentary on the current situation in Zimbabwe. I am not a journalist, nor a political activist, but I am a man with a conscience. Hence, this page is my civic responsibility. The more people that hear about the devastating rule in Zimbabwe and the problems therein, the better!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Thursday, 29th November 2012

Howzit

As I expected to happen, the degree work has begun to take a lot more of my time and the blog has had to take a back seat. I know that the degree is worth every minute of work, but I do wonder where people find the time to do this on a part time basis… If it is only the third week and I am having to take time out of other things in my life, then they must be awake 24/7!

-o00o-

So, not only has Kunonga ignored the court order – which I fully expected – but he has threatened to shoot a photographer. And the police do nothing about this?

What happened to law and order in Zimbabwe?

Does the law not apply to pro-ZANU PF people?

The shamed former Anglican bishop Nolbert Kunonga lashed out at journalists on Wednesday and threatened to shoot a photographer as he intensified his fight to keep church property.

Despite a Supreme Court ruling that Kunonga had been illegally occupying Anglican property since 2007 when he announced a breakaway during a row over homosexuality, his lawyers were back at the High Court on Wednesday seeking to stop his eviction.

In two separate applications, Kunonga’s lawyer Jonathan Samukange is trying to stop his eviction and also have the renegade bishop’s Anglican Church of the Province of Zimbabwe declared the legitimate owners of the church properties, including the Cathedral in Harare.

Kunonga arrived at the Cathedral early Wednesday and found the Deputy Sheriff Andrew Chakanyuka shipping out movable property from the cathedral’s pre-school.

The irate Kunonga - who once called President Robert Mugabe “the son of God” - was met by hordes of journalists.

Literally frothing at the mouth, he shook his finger at the gathered journalists who were shouting questions at him.

“Musatore mapictures angu please [Don’t take pictures of me please,” he said as he advanced on the NewsDay photographer Hardlife Samuwi.

“I will shoot you,” Kunonga told the snapper.

Minutes later, as Kunonga walked off the premises with his aide, the deputy sheriff Chakanyuka ran after him demanding keys to three vehicles - a Toyota Hilux, a Toyota Fortuner and a Mazda 626.

Kunonga, visibly distressed, told the sheriff: “Handina kuuya nemota ini ndisiyeiwo [I didn’t bring a car, leave me alone].”

The Supreme Court order last week in favour of the Church of the Province of Central Africa represented by Bishop Chad Gandiya empowered the deputy sheriff to eject Kunonga and 10 others from the cathedral offices, Paget House along Kwame Nkrumah Avenue and from 101 Central Avenue in Harare.


It would appear that pro-ZANU PF people can dismiss the Sheriff of the Court with a simple, “Leave me alone.”

Is that it?

-o00o-

Contrary to the first sentence, the team is not in Harare ‘to break an impasse’…

If they have been unable to break the impasse before, what makes them think that they can break it now?

President Jacob Zuma’s South African facilitation team arrived in Zimbabwe Tuesday evening to break an impasse over the constitution-making process, following accusations by the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) led by Professor Welshman Ncube that he was blocked from attending a principals meeting convened to discuss the draft constitution Monday.

This follows serious disagreements between Zanu PF and the MDC formations on handling the draft document following the holding of the Second All Stakeholders’ Conference last month.

President Robert Mugabe, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and his deputy Arthur Mutambara met in Harare to discuss the outstanding stakeholders’ report and resolved to set up a cross-party committee tasked with devising a mechanism to incorporate submissions from the stakeholders’ conference.

But Priscilla Misihairambwi-Mushonga, secretary general of the Ncube-MDC told VOA Studio 7 that her party leader did not attend the meeting that decided to form the committee, comprising the lead negotiators from the Management Committee representing the three main political parties in the
inclusive government.

Misihairabwi-Mushonga said: “He (Ncube) was certainly not a part of that decision.”

She said Ncube disagrees with the issue of creating another committee. “He disagreed first with the principle but also disagreed with the issues around the terms of reference of what that committee was going to do.”

The secretary general said Ncube was initially given the wrong venue, made to sit outside while the other three principals held their meeting, and was only invited to join the leaders after they had made their decision despite “personal assurances” from Tsvangirai that he had threatened to boycott the meeting if Ncube was not invited.

“By the time they called Professor Ncube they had already had discussion among themselves and had a conclusion to which they then asked Professor Ncube to comment,” Misihairabwi-Mushonga revealed.

However, Tsvangirai’s spokesperson William Bango issued conflicting statements as to what transpired during meetings of the unity government leaders.

Bango said the premier told him that Ncube participated in the second meeting in which the constitution-making process was discussed and the
MDC leader did not raise any objections about being left out of any discussions.

“The meeting started in the afternoon as scheduled … And at the beginning they were discussing normal government business at which Professor Mutambara has to be part of, while professor Ncube and (Constitutional Affairs Minister Eric) Matinenga and Professor Ncube were waiting in a small holding room.

“When they were through with the normal government business, Tsvangirai insisted that Professor Ncube be part of the constitution-making discussions and they discussed the issues together.

“Professor Ncube did not raise any objections at the time. He participated in that discussion and after that the three principals on the constitutional matter made a decision on a number of issues,” Bango said.

Bango insisted that the premier wanted to include his counterpart in the other MDC in the principals meeting, as mandated by the Southern African Development Community, noting that “unfortunately Ncube is in dispute with the deputy prime minister and also with President Mugabe as to who the legitimate leader is”.

Asked to comment on why the premier did not walk out of the meeting in protest since he invited Ncube, Bango said: “Professors Mutambara and Ncube have a problem which is under judicial scrutiny. What these principals were discussing at the beginning was the normal government business of which Professor Mutambara is deputy prime minister.”

Meanwhile, Constitution and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Eric Matinenga, who also attended the Monday meeting, said that the committee will be made up of three members from the current management committee.

But the Ncube-MDC says the setting up of this committee forced it to appeal for intervention by the South African facilitation team because there is an impasse on the way forward.

Misihairabwi-Mushonga said the Tsvangirai-MDC’s latest move is confusing because her party was under the impression, through MDC-T secretary general Tendai Biti, that they too had written to the facilitation team to come in and intervene after indicating that there is a stalemate.

She said: “The Global Political Agreement says the moment you have a stakeholders’ conference and the moment you have a draft you take them to parliament and you proceed to a referendum. If anybody is unhappy they can vote no. Those that are happy can vote yes. That is our position. It has not changed.”

She accused Zanu PF of trying to bring in some “rejected amendments in their second draft and renegotiate them.”

Zanu PF spokesman Rugare Gumbo said it was the duty and the right of the principals to take over the constitution making process.


The problem begins with the mediator being someone who has a vested interest in political affairs in Zimbabwe.

Let SADC appoint someone that would be totally impartial!

-o00o-

So much for freedom of expression in Zimbabwe.

Isn’t it amazing that ZANU PF can say whatever they want, but the people of Zimbabwe don’t have the same right?

Chinamasa and Gumbo threaten the country with a coup if Mugabe doesn’t win, but actors cannot put on a production…

Barely two months after the police stopped the performance of the play No Voice No Choice on political grounds, a different play, The Coup was also blocked in Bindura on Monday.

Bindura police denied the performance of the Rooftop Promotions production play at Chipadze Bus Terminus saying it was “political”.

Daves Guzha of Rooftop Promotions said for a country that has a 90 percent unemployment rate, it just boggles the mind why anyone would want to deny people decent employment.

“The people who are stopping us have no direct link with us. The professionals have looked at the content, they are happy with it, so which leg is ZRP standing on?

“What makes it worse is that they have not even seen the showcase but were quick to stop us from performing,” complained Guzha.

The producer said this was the second time since the creation of the Government of National Unity (GNU) that a Rooftop Promotions production has had a brush with law enforcement agents.

“In 2010 the cast of the play Rituals was arrested in Cashel Valley and we proceeded to have a full trial, hence the landmark ruling when the state lost the case,” said Guzha.

Interestingly, Lesley Moyo, Rooftop Promotions publicist said the same police station had on Wednesday last week cleared the show. The Censorship Board had also cleared the play.

“When the cast arrived at the performance venue on Monday afternoon they were informed by police details from Bindura Central Police Station that they could not go ahead with the performance.

“DISPOL assistant commissioner Chiwoko, who is in charge of Glendale, Chiweshe and partly Bindura informed the tour manager, Annamore Ziweya that the play was too political and therefore the cast could not go ahead with the show. He also instructed the other two police stations Glendale and Chombira to revoke the clearance granted earlier,” he said.

The play had a successful start at the University of Zimbabwe on November 19 and is currently on a national tour.

The Coup was written by Stanley Makuwe and revolves around a group of dead bodies crammed in a broken down hospital mortuary. The bodies decide to rise up and approach the country’s leaders to demand better service delivery and good governance.

The play zooms in on failing economy, the demise of the industrial sector and the worsening of the health delivery system and also focuses on the relationship between the coalition partners in the GNU.


How is it acceptable that there are two sides to every law in Zimbabwe? There is the ZANU PF side and then the side for everyone else…

-o00o-

These people have been remanded – in custody – until next year…

In my mind the State case is full of holes, contradictions and areas of serious query – so why aren’t these people free?

Twenty-six of the 29 MDC-T activists who are facing murder charges after the death of a police officer in Glen View last May will spend another Christmas in custody, their second in a row.

The majority of the activists were picked up a few days after the murder of Inspector Petros Mutedza and have been incarcerated ever since, without convictions.

Defence lawyer Charles Kwaramba told SW Radio Africa on Wednesday the activists are likely to spend another Christmas behind bars as the courts close down for the festive season on Friday.

‘This case is far from over…the State still has about four witnesses they wish to call to testify including a medical doctor. When the State is done with its submissions our clients are entitled to apply for discharge and if the judge decides otherwise, they will be put to their defence.

‘This will mean calling more witnesses to give testimony on their behalf.
 

Unfortunately for our clients this means spending another Christmas and New Year in custody,’ Kwaramba said.

The trial of the activists was postponed from Monday to Thursday and nothing much is expected from the bail hearing on Thursday, while the ongoing trial is expected to be postponed to early next year.

Two weeks ago, Youth Assembly chairman Solomon Madzore was granted a $500 bail by High Court Judge, Justice Chinembiri Bhunu. Also granted bail was Lovemore Taruvinga Magaya, while another activist Cynthia Manjoro, was granted bail in early October.


-o00o-

In between studying and blogging, I have been working on an entirely new book, and the one thing that I found is that England, despite being paid the princely sum of £2 million in the 1920s, refused to let the then English colony of Rhodesia to be self-governing.

What does that £2 million equate to today?

Following the break up of the Rhodesia and Nyasaland Federation in 1963, England gave the green light to Zambia and Malawi to become independent, but Rhodesia was denied that right, leading directly to the declaration of UDI in November 1965.

And now we find out that the English continue to feather Mugabe’s nest…

It makes the mind boggle!

British taxpayers have unknowingly been funding violence and repression across the globe, while dictators such as Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe owe the UK billions of pounds.

£2.35billion of loans handed out to foreign countries without any form of regulation - including payments to Iran, Burma and North Korea – remain unpaid, an MPs’ investigation has found.

Much of the money has been spent on British-made arms, which are then used to control citizens of repressive regimes.

The funds were handed out by UK Export Finance (UKEF) – once dubbed the ‘department of dodgy deals’ – which lends foreign governments money to buy British goods.

UKEF insisted it "abides by international agreements that apply to the operations of export credit agencies, including those on anti-bribery, environmental, human rights and social impacts and sustainable lending."

However, the investigation also revealed that the organisation, which makes no human rights or environmental checks on loans under £10million, also supplied money for the BP-backed Baku-Tblisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline, which breached 170 World Bank and European standards on human rights and the environment.

Let no British taxpayer flatter herself or himself that they are helping Rwanda. No, you are merely extending their misery

The news follows a former senior aide to Rwanda’s president claiming that British foreign aid to the country is "funding a dictator".

Earlier this week David Himbara, who was private secretary to President Paul Kagame until two years ago, said the £270 million of British aid that will be given to the country over the next three years is "sustaining a bad regime."

Kagame’s regime is alleged to be funding and arming a bloody rebellion in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Britain has promised aid for President Kagame at a rate of more than £80 million a year until 2015.

"Britain is not funding Rwanda. It is funding a dictator. Let no British taxpayer flatter herself or himself that they are helping Rwanda. No, you are merely extending their misery," Mr Himbara said, speaking to Channel 4’s Dispatches programme.

Britain's multi-billion-pound ring-fenced foreign aid budget is rising every year, despite David Cameron coming under fierce criticism.

International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell - who developed a close friendship with President Kagame - allowed a £16 million package to be handed over on his last day in office before being replaced in the September reshuffle.

Last month, Mr Cameron defended the decision to unfreeze the latest £16 million tranche of aid.

He said: "I am clear, Rwanda has been, and continues to be, a success story of a country that has gone from genocide and disaster to being a role model for development and lifting people out of poverty in Africa.

"I am proud of the fact that the last government, and this government, have continued to invest in that success."


Isn’t it about time that the sources of foreign input into Zimbabwe are made to declare their intentions and that the receiving government, in this case, Mugabe, are forced to give a complete and open declaration of just what they have done with the money?

-o00o-

Take care.

‘debvhu

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