THE MILITARY

As Zanu PF factions destroy each other, the military will have a huge say as to who would take over from President Mugabe.

THE MILITARY

As Zanu PF factions destroy each other, the military will have a huge say as to who would take over from President Mugabe.

PROPHET WALTER MAGAYA

He is a controversial prophet who continues to draw large crowds with his promise of miracles. But as his popularity soars he faces all sorts of allegations. So far he has survived.

TSVANGIRAI THE SURVIVOR

Two secretary generals tried to topple him but failed. His wife walked out but returned home. Now MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, is plotting his way to State House.

NEWSDZEZIMBABWE

Latest news, entertainment and sports.

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

MNANGAGWA'S WIFE GETS TOP POST

Chirumhanzu-Zibagwe member of the National Assembly Cde Auxilia Mnangagwa has been appointed chairperson of the Southern Region Caucus at the ongoing 2nd Ordinary Session of the 4th Pan African Parliament (PAP).

Cde Mnangagwa takes over from Zambia's Professor Geoffrey Lungwangwa as his country prepares for its own elections. The Southern African Regional Caucus comprises countries in the SADC region.

Issues that have continued to dominate debate at the session include human and women rights, ratification of the revised PAP Protocol and the quest to create a self sustaining budget for the PAP.

Earlier on this Wednesday morning, PAP president Hon. Roger Nkodo Dang presented his report on the state of the PAP covering the period from October 2005 to May 2016.

The PAP president applauded the oneness that has seen African legislators move together. "My gratitude also goes to all parliamentarians of the Pan African Parliament who through their activities at the Plenary within Permanent Committees or by representing the Pan African Parliament has enabled our assembly to rise from its ashes," said Mr Dang.

The Pan African Parliament, an organ of the African Union, is still grappling with the challenge of ratifying it's revised protocol.

According to President Dang's report, since its adoption by the Conference of Heads of States in June 2014, in Malabo Equatorial Guinea, the protocol has been signed, ratified and deposited by a single member state.

FISTS FLY IN SA PARLY

President Jacob Zuma's first appearance in parliament since the courts made two damning rulings against him got off to a bumpy start on Wednesday when rowdy EFF members were ejected from the National Assembly.

The EFF wrote a letter to speaker Baleka Mbete asking that Zuma not be allowed to speak in the National Assembly as he had violated the Constitution and also faced the reinstatement of corruption charges.

Zuma was present to address the National Assembly in Cape Town regarding the 2016/17 budget allocations for his administration.

Mbete declined the request.

The EFF also requested an urgent debate on the matter but Mbete declined the request saying that there was no basis in law to prevent him from speaking "as long as he is President of the Republic."

The sitting then soon turned into a screaming match between members of the EFF and Mbete who repeated over and again "Leave the chamber".

EFF members shouted‚ "You have broken an oath of office. You are an embarrassment Baleka even to your party."

"Switch off the mics‚" somebody urged the speaker.

Parliamentary protection officers‚ who were not in their usual white shirts‚ were summoned‚ to which EFF members said: "We are going to throw water in your face."

Several of its members shouted that the President was illegitimate and should leave the house instead.

Several EFF MPs appeared to be harshly manhandled. One bouncer could be seen holding an MP in a lock around his neck while EFF MP Nazier Paulsen who tried to fight back was also harshly dealt with.

In the first court ruling against Zuma‚ the Constitutional Court found that Zuma had failed to uphold‚ respect and defend the Constitution.

 

ZIMBABWE TO INTRODUCE BOND NOTES

Zimbabwe says it will introduce local “bond notes” and has tightened daily withdrawals to ease an acute shortage of cash, central bank governor, John Mangudya said on Wednesday.

The public will now only be able to withdraw a maximum of $1000, Euro 1000 and R20,000 from their accounts daily.

Mangudya has also announced that, with effect from May 5, 40 percent of all new US dollar receipts will be converted to rand, “in order to restore and promote the wide usage of currencies in the multicurrency basket”.

The RBZ governor did not give a specific date for the introduction of the bond notes, but only said this will be in “over two months’ time”.
Earlier, Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa had told Parliament that the circulation of the Rand in Zimbabwe had “been declining to a point where last year it came to zero.”the source

CASH CRISIS HITS PAYMENT SYSTEM

The total value of transactions processed through the national payment system (NPS) declined by nine percent to $951,8 million from $1 billion in the third week of April, latest Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) statistics indicate.

Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) transactions, the central bank said, “recorded a five percent decline from $790,61 million to $750,27 million during the week under analysis”, adding that “this, in large part, contributed to the decline in the total value of transactions processed through the NPS”.

This is on the back of a cash crisis that has hit Zimbabwe’s financial sector, with banks limiting depositors’ withdrawals.

The central bank said the cash problems had also affected spending and the value of the NPS transactions as most depositors were failing to access cash.
During the period under review, the NPS was dominated by RTGS transactions which contributed 78,82 percent of the total value of transactions, followed by mobile-money platform-based transactions which contributed 9,31 percent.

Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) accounted for 5,88 percent of the transactions a figure four percent down prior week with Point of Sale (POS) business accounting for 5,75 percent of the total NPS volumes and cheque transactions contributing 0,24 percent.
Zimbabwe has been experiencing cash shortages in the past few weeks — reminiscent of the 2008 economic and political crisis — with depositors queuing for days at banks to get their hard-earned money.

This comes as Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa recently said depositors were fuelling the country’s biting cash-crisis by keeping money outside the formal banking system.
“The liquidity crisis is a problem that we have to look squarely in the face and address,” he said adding that government was putting in place various measures, including a national financial strategy to ease the challenge.

“We have to understand that we don’t print the United States (US) dollar. We are a unique country — one of three countries in the world — that pays wages and buys small goods like mazhanje in United States dollars and that comes with its own challenges,” he said.
Zimbabwe abandoned its own currency in 2009 and now uses mainly the US dollar and the South African rand, although other currencies are also legal tender.

However, the recent depreciation of regional currencies against the greenback has seen the country losing more money to increased imports, as it is now cheaper to import than buying local products.

Chinamasa added that the “temporary cash shortages” were also being accelerated by Zimbabweans’ refusal to embrace plastic money.
In an effort to encourage people to use the banking system and promote financial inclusion, Zimbabwe recently ordered tobacco farmers, most of them communal farmers who had taken up growing the cash crop and ditching others such as maize and wheat, to open bank accounts to facilitate payments for deliveries.

The new system has, however, been blighted by glitches as farmers are failing to access their money on time from banks forcing them to spend days at tobacco auction floors. daily news

COPS BAN NATIONAL PLEDGE DEMO

 Police here banned the first anti-national pledge demonstration by the Mthwakazi Republic Party (MRP) yesterday, saying it had not been sanctioned by authorities and therefore, illegal.

Anti-riot police broke up the march by the far-left protesters in the city as they sought to demonstrate against a national pledge for children, which was introduced in schools at the start of the new term yesterday.

The demo, which was supposed to begin at Egodini Bus Terminus to Mhlanhlandlela Government Complex, was stopped immediately after the protestors began the march in the morning.

According to Mbonisi Gumbo, MRP spokesperson, their aim was to present the petition to the provincial office of the Primary and Secondary Education ministry demanding what they termed an end to the “violation of child-related crucial rights which entail the right to freedom of worship and basic education”.

Some parents and churches have protested the pledge, in which children will be made to recite every day after singing the national anthem.

In the national pledge, children pledge their allegiance to God and the national flag and pay their respects to “brave fathers and mothers who lost their lives in the Chimurenga”, the 70s war of independence against the minority white-led government that ushered in independence in 1980.

“We demand the end to the national pledge as it violates the rights of children and their parents as enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe, and the articles of the African Union and the United Nations of which Zimbabwe is a signatory,” Gumbo said.

Sylvia Utete-Masango, the permanent secretary in the Education ministry, said on Monday: “The words in the pledge talk about hard work, commitment and dignity.
“I don’t know if there are parents who don’t want honest and hard-working children.”

FLIP FLOP TSVANGIRAI : WE ARE NOW BOYCOTTING ELECTIONS

Morgan Tsvangirai’s opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) says it will continue boycotting all elections until sticking points have been resolved and far-reaching electoral reforms enacted.

This comes as the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) is finalising preparations for the by-elections in Mazowe North, which has been vacant since the death of Edgar Chidavaenzi of Zanu PF.

The statutory instrument calling the by-election has not yet been gazetted, and the MDC has said it is boycotting that special vote as well.

This comes after the party also shunned the April 23 Guruve South by-election, won by Zanu PF candidate, Patrick Dutiro, who beat the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA)’s Simbarashe Mutsvene.

The Guruve South seat fell vacant after the Zanu PF representative Criswell Mutematsaka lost the seat in terms of section 129(1)(k) of the Constitution when he was expelled from the governing party.

An MDC official told the Daily News yesterday the party would continue to disengage from all polls until electoral reforms outlined in the national electoral reform agenda (Nera) document have been enacted, adding the MDC remains opposed to participation in mere rituals disguised as elections.

Over 10 opposition political parties joined the MDC to craft and sign up to the Nera in the call for a truly credible election as a precondition for the return to legitimacy, which the parties agreed must become an issue of national priority.

Nera prescribes that the electoral body introduce the biometric vote and also wants the next 2018 poll to be internationally run and supervised by the United Nations.
“The official position of the party is that we shall not participate in any elections without electoral reforms having been carried out,” MDC spokesperson Obert Gutu told the Daily News yesterday.

“The reforms that we are demanding have been succinctly captured in the Nera document. Only the National Council of the party, being the highest decision-making body of the party in between congresses, has got the mandate and power to alter, amend and or abandon this position.”

Besides a biometric voter register, Nera also calls for the complete and total independence of Zec, the abandonment of the use of voter registration slips in polling, the use of postal voting strictly in accordance with the Sadc Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections, dubbed the Grand Baie Protocol, and clear definition of voter education that recognises the Bill of Rights.

Nera also calls for an accurate and up-to-date electronic voters’ roll to be made available to all interested political players in a searchable and analysable format, and that traditional leaders should be apolitical.

It also calls for the harmonisation of all laws with the new Constitution of Zimbabwe, particularly laws such as Public Order and Security Act, Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act in particular Section and 121 of this Act, and the Broadcasting Services Act, among a raft of legislation.

Nera also envisages that members of the security services — the real power behind President Robert Mugabe’s throne — should not participate in any political activities and that the Diaspora vote should be immediately adopted and implemented and that those in prisons and other places of incarceration should be allowed to vote in accordance with the ruling of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and other regional jurisprudence.

Tsvangirai, 64, has led the MDC since it was formed in 1999 to challenge Mugabe — the sole ruler since the country gained independence from Britain in 1980 — and his Zanu PF party.

But the ex-labour union leader has failed to dislodge the 92-year-old Mugabe in three elections, although none of them was free or fair, according to the MDC and Western observers.

Mugabe denies MDC allegations that his Zanu PF has cheated the MDC of victory in four major elections since 2000.

Tsvangirai was urged not to contest in the 2013 elections because many of the electoral reforms he had asked for had not been implemented, but he went on to participate and controversially lost to Mugabe.

The MDC has said it will not repeat that mistake. Tsvangirai’s party remains the biggest challenge to Mugabe’s continued hold on power. Tsvangirai is still seen as a popular hero and a focus for the MDC’s rallying cry of chinja or change. daily news

MNANGAGWA IS UNELECTABLE

The boycott by workers of the government-organised Workers’ Day rally in Harare on Monday, at which embattled Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa was the guest of honour, has opened the Midlands godfather to fresh attacks from his Zanu PF enemies.
Ruling party officials linked to Zanu PF’s ambitious Young Turks, the Generation 40 (G40) — who are rabidly opposed to Mnangagwa succeeding President Robert Mugabe — told the Daily News yesterday that the fact that even Zanu PF supporters had shunned the May Day commemorations “confirmed that Ngwena (Mnangagwa) is unelectable, as he has no social base”.

At the same time, the beleaguered Midlands godfather’s supporters claimed that the shunning of the event by workers was “an act of sabotage by the G40 who are hellbent on embarrassing Ngwena”.

The renewed onslaught on Mnangagwa, who is nicknamed “The Crocodile” on account of his alleged ruthlessness, came after the VP suffered the indignity of addressing a virtually empty Rufaro Stadium, after government ill-advisedly sought to hijack this year’s May Day commemorations for its own ends.

“While it is a fact that the country’s workforce has dwindled over the years, it is shocking that the stadium was empty even after State media worked hard to publicise the fact that the VP would be the guest speaker.

“Where were his supporters? Where was Mbare? I think (Mbare MP Tendai ) Savanhu would have pulled a bigger crowd than what we saw and that is why some of us are worried at the prospect of having someone like him, who clearly has no grassroots support, dreaming to be our presidential candidate for 2018.

“That is also the reason why some of us are opposed to the machinations of Team Lacoste (Mnangagwa faction) who do not appear to appreciate the obvious fact that no one, not even Zanu PF members want their godfather,” a Zanu PF central committee member linked to the G40 said.

However, war veterans loyal to the VP, who spoke to the Daily News yesterday accused the G40, and the “Zanu PF commissariat in particular” of sabotaging Mnangagwa.
The spokesperson of a faction of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) that is loyal to Mnangagwa, Douglas Mahiya, said given that this year’s Workers’ Day activities had been hosted by government, it should have been incumbent upon Zanu PF to mobilise its supporters for Monday’s event.

“That is the role of the party commissariat, but they slept on duty as they went AWOL (absent without official leave) instead of mobilising people to come to Rufaro.
“We know that they always bus people from far afield to hoodwink the president into thinking that all is well and that people are happy even when it is clear that they are not. We have said it again and again that something is terribly wrong with the Zanu PF commissariat,” Mahiya said.

He also said another reason for the low turnout at Rufaro Stadium was because war veterans were “being side-lined both in the party (Zanu PF) and in government”.
“We have not been given space to participate in the activities of the party. For a long time now, we have been relegated to the periphery of both Zanu PF and the government, and that is why you see things are going awfully wrong in government as well,” he said.

But the G40-aligned Zanu PF officials refuted this “with utter contempt”, saying that the reality was that Mnangagwa was not only “just disliked generally, but also feared all round”.
“This dislike and fear began when he headed the CIO in the early 1980s, a period during which thousands of innocent civilians were killed in Matabeleland and the Midlands. This continued even in 2008 when the MDC was a major political force,” one of them countered.
Afghanistan-based political analyst, Maxwell Saungweme, said the boycott of Mnangagwa’s event was “a manifestation of Zanu PF’s factional and succession wars that have divided the party to the point of nearly destroying it”.

“It is difficult to rule out sabotage of the event because there are so many people in top positions who are being propped up by patronage and not their social base.
“Zanu PF is known for forcing people to attend rallies ... so if this rally had the blessing of the First Family and the party, people would have been frog-marched to the event. This is another clear manifestation of divisions within the party,” he said.

Recently, Mugabe’s former trusted aide, Didymus Mutasa, dismissed the chances of Mnangagwa succeeding the nonagenarian, also saying he was “simply unelectable”.
When asked then who he thought could succeed Mugabe, Mutasa said only Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) leader, Joice Mujuru, had “the right qualities to lead Zimbabwe”. daily news

MPHOKO CAUSES SCENE AT ZITF

VICE-President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his counterpart Phelekezela Mphoko took turns to order the removal of various paraphernalia from a stand exhibiting national hero and late Vice-President Joshua Nkomo’s history at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) last week, NewsDay has learnt.


Nkomo, who led PF Zapu during the struggle against colonialism, joined President Robert Mugabe’s first post-independence government as a Cabinet minister, but was sacked before rejoining as Vice-President following the signing of a unity pact in 1987 until his death in 1999.

Impeccable sources said Mphoko was the first to tour the stand last Wednesday before Mnangagwa visited the stand the following day, Thursday. “He (Mphoko) arrived at the stand, looked around and found 50 copies of Nkomo’s autobiography, The Story of My Life, being exhibited. Mphoko ordered his aides to remove the books, but did not tell the family why and how they would recover them,” a source told NewsDay, adding 49 copies of the book were later returned on Friday.

An angry Mphoko on Friday rejected the claims. “Me? Are people crazy? Please do not play games with me. I don’t want that,” Mphoko fumed before going dead quiet on the phone.
The late Father Zimbabwe’s son Sibangilizwe Nkomo seemed cagey when asked about the incident.
“I have heard that there is an exhibition at ZITF, but I would need to check with other family members. I am not sure about that incident,” he said.

Contacted for comment on Monday, Nkomo’s eldest daughter Thandiwe Nkomo-Ebrahim initially said she would call back, but her phone later went unanswered. Jabulani Hadebe, the chief executive officer of the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo National Foundation, could not be reached for comment.

Minister in Mphoko’s office Tabetha Kanengoni-Malinga professed ignorance about the incident.
“Is that what happened? But I was standing right next to him (Mphoko) when he toured the stand and I did not hear him say that to anyone. I am not aware of that incident,” Kanengoni-Malinga said.
The head of the Central Intelligence Organisation’s close security unit, Miles Ngulube, somewhat confirmed the matter before he made a U-turn saying he knew nothing about the incident.

“I was there at the stand wani (of course)! Who gave you my number? Just because I am the head of security, so people think I know. Talk to the guys in Bulawayo, I know nothing about what you are saying,” Ngulube said.

Ngulube also queried: “I left Bulawayo as soon as the President (Robert Mugabe) left on Friday, so how would I know about that?”

Nkomo’s book caused untold discomfort in Mugabe’s government as it revealed intricate details of the Gukurahundi episode that forced him into a union with the veteran Zimbabwean leader following years of military-backed violence which caused at least 20 000 civilian deaths in the western parts of the country.

Mphoko, a former Zapu commander in the early years of the liberation war, has had his credentials questioned by his former colleagues amid claims he abandoned the war at the critical stages, hiding in Mozambique and started a family while others continued fighting.

Nkomo was at the time of the genocide forced to flee the country fearing for his life. Conservative figures put the death toll at the hands of the crack North Korean-trained 5th Brigade at 20 000 mostly Ndebele-speaking civilians in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces who stood accused of harbouring alleged armed bandits linked to the then Zapu.

It is understood that when Mnangagwa toured the same stand on Thursday, he reportedly also ordered one of his aides to “remove some material”.

“The following day, when VP Mnangagwa came to the stand, he saw a board that had pictures of the late Father Zimbabwe and we suspect he was unhappy about it because some of the pictures were about Gukurahundi. We just saw his security coming back to collect the board and never returned it,” a source close to the Nkomo family said.

The source also said: “But Mnangagwa, unlike Mphoko, asked one of his officials to leave his details with Nkomo family members manning the exhibition so that they would be able to collect the stuff after the event.

“After we engaged the head of security (Ngulube), VP Mphoko’s people on Friday returned 49 books that had been confiscated, meaning only one was missing, while we did not hear anything from Mnangagwa.”

Mnangagwa was not available for comment yesterday, and so was Minister of State in his office Clifford Sibanda.

Mugabe, who toured the stand on Friday accompanied by Togolese President Faure GnassingbĂ©, first viewed his portraits that covered much of the Zanu PF space. He then proceeded to the information department, business development and liaison department, grassroots, women’s league, and department of environment and tourism.

On his way out, Mugabe also paid a visit to the Nkomo stand. Nkomo’s portraits as well as those of his wife, Mama Mafuyana, were on show as well as a small statue of the late Vice-President. The Zanu PF leader passed without a word.

Mugabe went on to tour other stands including that of his company, Alpha and Omega Dairy, amid heightened security closing out journalists from listening to his conversation with his senior management.  newsday

MNANGAGWA WAS SABOTAGED, SAYS TEAM LACOSTE

ZANU PF factional fights have been blamed for the embarrassingly low turn-out at the government-sponsored Workers’ Day commemorations addressed by Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa at Rufaro Stadium on Monday.


Mnangagwa was forced to address just a handful of people, among them bussed Zanu PF supporters.
His loyalists yesterday jumped to blame the G40 faction in Zanu PF for sabotaging the event to spite Mnangagwa, who is linked to the rival Team Lacoste group.

“This is clear sabotage. G40 wanted to send a message that Mnangagwa has no support and doesn’t command a huge following both in the party and civil service,” one Zanu PF official said on condition of anonymity.

“Under normal circumstances at similar events, Zanu PF will be asked to bus people to attend. Many buses will be provided for such events. However, this did not happen because G40 people withdrew the buses. People wanted to come, but they had no means considering the current economic situation prevailing in the country.”

The official added: “We had gathered information on the planned sabotage and we were fully aware that the stadium would be empty. However, the VP was not worried about that and he will not be affected by such plots.” 

Zimbabwe Federation of Trade Unions (ZFTU) secretary-general Kenias Shamuyarira confirmed suspected political interference had spoiled the day.
“It’s true political meddling was there. We were given the mandate to organise at short notice together with the Ministry of Labour,” he said.

“It was then the duty of the federation and the ministry to co-ordinate everything because it was for workers, but in the process, we have seen political activists trying to assist, yet they were trying to measure their popularity and to try and outshine one another within political factionalism.”

Shamuyarira said ZFTU had been assured that transport was catered for and the money was given to Zanu PF provincial commissar Shadreck Mashayamombe, but many workers were not ferried.
“He (Mashayamombe) should explain what happened. A lot of workers were left stranded for transport. In a post-mortem review, we discovered that we should not include political parties at such commemorations. Politicians should stay away,” Shamuyarira said, adding it was wrong to group workers along political party lines.

Mnangagwa loyalists particularly blamed Labour minister Prisca Mupfumira, Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere and Mashayamombe for the fiasco.

Both Kasukuwere and Mupfumira were reportedly in a Cabinet meeting yesterday when NewsDay sought their comment, while Mashayamombe refused to be drawn into discussing the matter.
However, some within G40 took credit for organising the few people who attended the 
commemorations, saying had it not been for them, the stadium would have been totally empty.
 

“As a party, we mobilised 10 buses through Zupco and those people you saw there were mobilised by Zanu PF and a few by the Zimbabwe Federation of Trade Unions,” a Zanu PF official linked to the G40 said.

“The Ministry of Public Service was supposed to provide at least 20 buses to ferry the people, but we were shocked that the buses went empty. When information was passed that ED (VP Mnangagwa) was the guest of honour, the zeal to mobilise went off.”

Most of the vendors forced to attend the belated May Day commemorations walked away after grabbing free food and T-shirts, forcing Mnangagwa to address an empty stadium.
NewsDay witnessed some of the Zanu PF members stampede for the free food, with police battling to maintain order and, in some cases, having to use vicious dogs.

The food included a pack of buns and a bottle of fruit juice from Alpha and Omega Dairy, run by the First Family.

Soon after receiving the food packs, which were being given at the entrance to the stadium, some of the people quickly made their way out of the stadium returning to their workstations, leaving a handful to listen to the VP.

“We don’t have jobs. Why should we go in the stadium to listen to empty promises? It is now a vendors’ day,” one vendor shouted as he made his way out of the stadium, with a pack of buns in hand.

Mugabe’s Zanu PF party had hoped to raise a capacity crowd for the May Day commemorations to counter the well-attended event held by the main opposition MDC-T-alligned Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions at Gwanzura Stadium in Highfield on Sunday. newsday

WOMAN HELPS HUBBY RAPE TEEN SISTER

A 15-YEAR-OLD girl has told a court that her sister drugged and assisted her husband to rape her while she was unconscious so that she could have a baby for the couple as her sibling was failing to conceive.
The sister, who is 35-years-old and her husband aged 30, both of whom cannot be named to protect the identity of their alleged victim, have been married for the past eight years but are struggling to have a baby.

This was heard during the initial appearance of the couple before Gweru regional magistrate, Morgan Nemadire, facing rape charges. The teenager’s sister is facing an additional assault charge.

The couple pleaded not guilty to the charges and were remanded in custody to May 10.
Prosecuting, Andrew Marimo told the court that in January last year, her sister’s husband asked for sex from her but she refused and he forced himself on her.
“On the second count, the accused intended to rape the complainant and his wife (accused number 2) assisted by giving the complainant a drink laced with drugs. When she was unconscious, the accused number 1 (the husband) with his wife’s blessing raped her again to get her pregnant,” said Marimo.

The court heard that between March and August last year, the girl was alone at home with her sister’s husband. Marimo said he against asked to have sex with her and she turned him down, but he caressed her and raped her once without her consent.

“On the fourth count, the complainant was with the accused before they agreed to have sexual intercourse. While in the middle of it, they heard the gate being opened and they both went out of the bedroom but were seen by the accused number 2 (her sister) who then bashed the complainant,” said Marimo.

He said the matter came to light after the complaint showed up at school with a swollen hand.

The court heard that her teacher took her to hospital for medical attention where it was revealed that she was being raped with her sister’s consent. chronicle

TEACHERS GET THEIR 2015 BONUSES

THE government has paid teachers their 2015 bonuses, ending months of anxiety among the largest group of professionals on the government’s payroll. In February, treasury announced pay dates for all civil servants and has been paying different departments in the last few months. Zimbabwe Teachers Association’s chief executive officer Sifiso Ndlovu said teachers started receiving their 13th cheque yesterday after midday.

 “Yes our members have been paid their bonuses. It started being accessible at midday. In the morning, there was a bit of chaos as it was reflecting in their bank accounts but they couldn’t access it. Those who might be having challenges accessing their money, I believe tomorrow (today) they’ll be able to access it,” said Ndlovu.
He lauded the government for fulfilling its promises. “Definitely there’s been a lot of uncertainty among our members because of the economic situation. But we’re grateful and want to thank the employer for keeping its promises,” he said.

Teachers join other civil servants who include the army, police, prison officers and those in the health sector who have already been paid their bonuses. Soldiers were paid their bonuses in February while the police, prison officers and health sector received their 13th cheque last month.

The rest of the civil servants and institutions that receive government’s aid are expected to be paid their bonuses at the end of the month. Speaking at the National Sports Stadium on Independence Day, President Mugabe apologised to civil servants for delays in the payment of their regular salaries and bonuses.

“The government will continue to find ways of improving the welfare of civil servants,” he said. “It’s the desire of government that salaries progressively match the Poverty Datum Line. The government apologises for the late disbursement of salaries, bonuses and monthly payments to pensioners but, be rest assured that the government is working flat out to improve the situation.

“Now that the workers have begun contributing towards the pension fund, payment of pensioners will be more predictable and on time.”

NATIONAL PLEDGE OFFICIALLY LAUNCHED

Government yesterday defended the national Pledge arguing that the wording was extracted from the preamble of the national Constitution which was overwhelmingly adopted by millions of Zimbabweans during the referendum held three years ago. 

 The pledge, which aims to instil patriotism and commitment to the national interest, was introduced a fortnight ago and was officially launched at Harare High School by Primary and Secondary Education permanent secretary Dr Sylvia Utete-Masango yesterday and replicated in all the country’s 10 provinces. Dr Utete-Masango said children needed to familiarise themselves with the new Constitution and cherish the value of hard work.

She said the education system did not have a philosophy that underpins it and the philosophy of hunhu/ubuntu, the value system and identity, was embedded in the new curriculum.
THE NATIONAL PLEDGE
Almighty God, in whose hands our future lies, I salute the national flag. 
United in our diversity by our common desire for freedom, justice and equality.
Respecting the brave fathers and mothers who lost lives in the Chimurenga/ Umvukela
and national liberation struggles.
We are proud inheritors of our national resources.
We are proud creators and participants in our vibrant traditions and cultures. 
We commit to honesty and the dignity of hard work
“We have our national symbols. For example, we have the Flag and anyone who is Zimbabwean cannot say I don’t subscribe to the Flag because this is a national symbol. We also have the Constitution. Because the Constitution is the highest law of the land, who can say I don’t subscribe to the Constitution? The wording of the Pledge is actually derived from the preamble,” she said.

“This is part and parcel of the new curriculum. We are trying to strengthen the issues to do with our value system, heritage and who we are as a people. The new curriculum is underpinned by a philosophy.”

The launch comes as the quasi-political Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights acting on behalf of a Harare man is contesting the constitutionality of the requirement. The father of three school-going children who is fronting the challenge said the pledge was unconstitutional and against his religious beliefs.
This, he said, was not his understanding of prayer shared by his faith, which reserved worship to God alone. He contends that the national pledge is offensive to his religious convictions and thus befouls various sections of the supreme law of the country.

The man’s children are attending Mashambanhaka Secondary School National Pledge officially launched in Murehwa and Chizungu Primary School in Epworth.

Hundreds of parents and guardians in Harare yesterday thronged schools to listen to their children recite the national pledge as the new term began after Government issued a directive that they should attend. When The Herald visited Zengeza 2 High, St Mary’s Mission Primary, Harare High, and Tangenhamo Primary schools, parents could be seen jostling to hear their children recite the national pledge.

After the pledge, parents ululated and presented gifts to their children in a prize-giving day fashion. Primary and Secondary Education Deputy Minister Professor Paul Mavhima said the pledge was expected to build individual consciousness and commitment to children about their country.

In the pledge, children promised their allegiance to God and the national flag and pay their respect to “brave fathers and mothers who lost their lives in the Chimurenga/Umvukela”.

“The national pledge was done today in all provinces. It is derived from our national Constitution and is not unique to Zimbabwe. Our Constitution’s preamble has that commitment. It is part of our heritage studies which is an emphasis in the new curriculum,” he said.

Questioned if they faced resistance from schools, even trust schools, Prof Mavhima said: “We cannot mount a war with schools. We will persuade them,” he said. He said that in America, before Cabinet or Parliament commences, they start with a pledge of allegiance and in Britain, they have the oath of allegiance and a pledge. Prof Mavhima said foreigners were not obligated to make the pledge.

“I was in the American system as a foreigner and I was not forced to take their pledge. The American pledge is not only for schoolchildren it is for all public functions,” said Prof Mavhima. However, parents interviewed yesterday expressed mixed feelings arguing that they should have been consulted first.

“I am against the pledge because my children are forced to salute to a superior human being who as parent, I am not familiar with. I am a traditional person. Why are they forcing my child to recite that the Constitution gives us the freedom of worship and association?” said a Mbare resident, Mr Leonard Takawira.

“The words that are in the national pledge were derived from the Constitution that we voted for as Zimbbweans.There is nothing wrong with my children reciting the pledge as they are committing to hard work and honesty. That is what I want as a parent,” said Mr Takaidza Takaidza of Chitungwiza. herald

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

MDC : KASUKUWERE MUST BE STOPPED

The new Constitution was adopted by a massive majority of the people of Zimbabwe and signed into law in March 2013. Three years on it would be reasonable to expect that the Government of Zimbabwe would be completing the alignment of the 400 Acts of Parliament that need adjustments to bring them into line with the Constitution.

 One of the most important of these Acts is the Urban Councils Act as it affects nearly half the population of the country and impacts on the daily lives of millions. Instead, no effort has been made to bring the Act into alignment with the Constitution and instead, the Minister of Local Government is continually trying to use the old Urban Councils Act to impose his will on the democratically elected Councils that are tasked with the responsibility of governing the areas under their jurisdiction.

The principle of devolution was one of the most important issues raised by the people during Copac and as a result, the Constitution in Chapter 14 in sections 264 to 279 sets out in clear terms a new dispensation for elected Councils, giving them the right and all the powers required to Govern the areas under their jurisdiction.

In Mid 2015, the Minister of Local Government took steps to dismiss two Councilors and to suspend the remaining Councilors of the City of Gweru in complete disregard of the Constitution.

The MDC took the Minister to Court on this issue and was granted an order by the Courts in Gweru that the Councilors should resume their duties and stating that the actions of the Minister were ultra vires the Constitution. Despite this, the Minister appealed the decision to the High Court in Bulawayo and this Court confirmed the earlier rulings by the Court in Gweru and awarded costs to the Party, suggesting that the High Court considered the Ministers appeal to have no merit at all. Despite this clear decision the Minister has again appealed the rulings to the Supreme Court in Harare.

The MDC wants to know if the Minister has Cabinet authority to continuously appeal Court decisions thereby wasting Court time and incurring significant legal and administrative costs to be borne by the Exchequer. If he does have Cabinet support then this confirms the view that the Government holds the new Constitution in absolute contempt and has little or no intention of either abiding by the Constitution or pursuing the alignment of existing legislation or behaving in a Constitutional manner within the rule of law.

If he does not have Cabinet approval then it is time that the Government moved to rein him in and demand that he respect the Constitution in all respects in the manner in which he administers his Ministry and exercises his authority.

In recent weeks, in complete violation of the Constitution, the Minister has intervened in the affairs of the Council for Harare. He has demanded that the Council rescind its decision to appoint Mr. James Mushore as the new Town Clerk after an extensive and professional recruitment process that identified him as the most qualified and experienced candidate for this important post. When the elected Mayor of Harare refused to comply, the Minister responded by unlawfully suspending the Mayor both as Mayor of the City and as Councilor for Mt Pleasant.

In response the MDC has again been forced, in the absence of any action by Government to remedy matters, to go back to the Courts for a decision in the matter. An urgent application to stop the Minister interfering in the affairs of the Council has been submitted to the High Court and a decision is expected shortly. In addition the Party has reluctantly taken the decision to ask the highest Court in the Country, the Constitutional Court, to set aside the relevant sections of the Urban Councils Act that are clearly in conflict with the Constitution.

In addition to these Court actions, the Combined Harare Residents Association, acting in the interests of the residents of the City, has supported the Council’s decision to appoint Mr. Mushore to the post of Town Clerk and has made a separate application to the Courts for a specific ruling in favour of the Councils decisions. This is especially important as the Association was involved in the selection process and has expressed full confidence in Mr. Mushore as the new custodian of their interests.

The MDC wishes to state once again that the decision to appoint Mr. Mushore was a collective decision and that it stands in full support of his appointment and wants him to continue to assume his responsibilities in the Councils affairs while the Courts deal with the actions of the Minister. The Party considers the interests of the residents of the City of Harare as supreme in this matter and is absolutely satisfied that the Council has acted 
lawfully in terms of the supreme law of Zimbabwe as expressed in the Constitution.

The Party recognises the professionalism of the Courts and has complete confidence that they will not deviate from their responsibilities as custodians of our Laws and our Constitution.
E G Cross
Shadow Minister of Local Government

INVEST HOME, MINISTER TELLS DIASPORANS

The minister of state for national security, Kembo Mohadi has called on people born in Beitbridge district who are based in the Diaspora to invest in the area and contribute to its economic growth. 

The minister who is also the House of Assembly representative for Beitbridge East Constituency said it was important for other luminaries and those in the Diaspora to play and active role in fostering development in their home area. He made the remarks during the official opening of the 1000-hectare Zhovhe Farm which is located 70 km west of the border town over the weekend.
The farm is a horticulture project that is being run by Beitbridge born businessman, Erasmus Marema of Topic Investments who is based in South Africa.

Currently the farm has a thriving electricity powered irrigation project consisting of 60 hectares of soya-beans and 40 hectares of maize and cattle rearing project
. herald

DON'T CHASE AWAY WAR VETS KIDS, GOVT PLEADS WITH SCHOOLS

Government is pleading with schools to accept children of war veterans and other eligible beneficiaries saying the delay in the processing of the fees was due to slow money transfer systems at the banks. 

 Welfare Services for War Veterans, War Collaborators, Ex-Political Detainees and Restrictees Minister Retired Colonel Tshinga Dube yesterday told The Herald that all the fees had been disbursed, but the banking problems were delaying the process.

“We have disbursed all the fees, but because of the problems in the banks, they are not yet accessible. “Banks are only using RTGS and it takes donkey years before it reflects. “We have processed payments for all the eligible students that we pay for,” said Minister Dube.

He assured school heads that the money was paid and urged them to be patient and accommodate the beneficiaries in their respective schools. “We are pleading with schools not to turn the children away because the money is already there,” said Minister Dube.
Individual bank account holders were getting a paltry $200 per day due to the current cash shortage that has hit the country. Some were opting for bank transfer systems as they could not raise the required amounts for boarding schools.

Schools open today straight from a public holiday during which banks were closed. Some boarding schools were yesterday turning away pupils for non-payment of fees ahead of today’s opening of the second school term.
Primary and Secondary Education Minister Lazarus Dokora told the Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association annual conference that ended in Victoria Falls on Saturday that boarding schools can bar pupils from entering their premises if they have not paid fees for the term.
The minister said the policy excluded day schools and only boarding schools were mandated to exclude pupils as they require the money for their day-to-day operations. In Bulawayo, pupils with no proof of payment were being turned away from buses transporting them from the City Hall car park to their respective schools.

Some schools wanted pupils to have paid at least three quarters of the fees, with pupils being admitted on condition that their parents would have signed affidavits stating that the remaining fees would be paid by month-end.

Some parents said the ongoing cash shortage and the late payment of salaries by some companies were making it difficult for them to settle arrears. Early last month banks introduced stringent cash management systems including limiting maximum cash withdrawals to $200 per transaction and switching off some of their ATMs following the liquidity crisis that hit the market.

ZimSwitch facility was disabled and customers were unable to receive cash backs from some supermarkets. Tobacco farmers were not left out in the crisis because they were also unable to access their money after selling the crop.

Some ATMs were off and they were only allowed to withdraw limited amounts from banking halls. People have been complaining of the cash challenges with some saying the RTGS system was slow and was negatively affecting business.

TRANSFORMER CRISIS HITS ZESA

ZESA needs about 3 000 transformers to provide power to thousands of homes throughout the country, parliamentarians heard last week. Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company managing director Engineer Julian Chinembiri told the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy that the power utility was also constrained by lack of resources to purchase them.

 The committee, chaired by Masvingo Urban MP Cde Daniel Shumba (Zanu-PF), wanted to know why the ZETDC bought transformers from Zesa Enterprises (ZENT) — its sister company – when it had running tenders with winning bidders.

Pito Investments, which won a $10 million tender in 2010, has been struggling to supply the transformers only supplying transformers worth about $1,5 million in the past six years.
When the firm’s representatives appeared before the same committee, they indicated that they were facing financial challenges prompting legislators to question their capacity to deliver on the tender.

Eng Chinembiri said the instruction to engage ZENT came from the Ministry of Energy and Power Development — its parent ministry under former Minister Dzikamai Mavhaire.
“The argument, which the ministry put then was that we need to create employment locally and of course improve on good synergies,” said Eng Chinembiri.

“But as we were looking at the rate of supply of transformers from ZENT, we saw that it wasn’t satisfying our requirements. So, we said if they can’t satisfy our requirements, we need to continue with tenders . . . At the end of the day we approached Zesa Holdings and we informed them about the challenges we were facing with transformers.”

PARKS TO DESTOCK AS DROUGHT BITES

HARARE, May 3 (The Source) – The Parks and Wildlife Management Authority of Zimbabwe says it will reduce its stock of wildlife in the country to manageable levels after drought affected pastures and water sources.

Wildlife estates, which mostly lie in thedrought prone regions of the country, including the Zambezi Valley and the south eastern parts of Zimbabwe, are failing to cope with demand for pastures and water due to thedrought that has hit southern Africa and left 36 million people across the region requiring food aid.

In Zimbabwe, four million people are facing starvation.

Government says over 28,000 cattle perished this year across the country during the period leading to March, when the country received improved rainfall but not enough to rescue the season.

The move by the Parks authority to destock points to a desperate situation in national parks, which are home to scores of game, including elephant, buffalo, zebra, rhino, lions and many others, analysts say.

“In light of the drought that was induced by the El Nino phenomenon, Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, intends to destock its Parks Estates through selling some of the wildlife,” the authority said in a statement emailed to stakeholders on Tuesday.

“The authority is therefore inviting members of the public with capacity to acquire and manage wildlife to submit their expressions of interests.”

It did not say the number of animals to be moved to private management, whether the destocking would involve the export of animals, or which species had been most affected by the drought.

However, the country’s stock of 83,000 elephants far outstrips its carrying capacity, which is about half this number.

After being confronted by criticism for exporting elephants to China, Environment Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri said in January that lions, baboons and hyenas could also be exported as the country grapples with overpopulation and the crippling drought.

“We are going to increase the number of exports of elephants and other species, because they have done a good job in taking care of those (animals) they have already bought from us,” Muchinguri-Kashiri said then.

ZIM AWARDS $600M ENERGY CONTRACTS TO DODGY DEALERS

HARARE, May 3 (The Source) The Zimbabwe government has put $600 million worth of the country’s critical power projects in the hands of a middleman accused of drug trafficking, and awarded big contracts to companies that are bankrupt or facing corruption charges.

With Zimbabwe desperate to rebuild its decaying energy infrastructure, dozens of foreign companies have tendered for lucrative Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) contracts to refurbish existing power stations and build new plants.

 The bulk of these contracts have gone to Intratrek, whose executive chairman, Ibrahim Yusuf, has a history tainted by drugs charges in Zambia and even the sale of unapproved circumcision devices in South Africa.

Intratrek, with no record in energy itself, is a middleman for a string of contractors. An investigation by The Source reveals that some of these companies are in fact bankrupt, facing charges of fraud and bribery, and may not have the capacity to raise the money to complete the projects as they claimed.

Yusuf, described on his company website as “the driving force behind the business”, is named in multiple police affidavits in Zambia as being part of a drug ring.

An investigation in 2010 by the Mail & Guardian newspaper identified Yusuf as a seller of “pill packages” used by Mandrax smugglers. Yusuf had been named in a 1985 Zambian court judgment and Zambia’s Drug Enforcement Commission was quoted by the M&G as saying Yusuf “is a well-known drug trafficker.”

A detention warrant for drug dealer McDonald Ngwira claimed the cartel had imported “two million tablets of a poisonous drug called Methaqualone hydrochloride…popularly known as Mandrax”.

Besides the drug allegations, a 2002 article in Zambia’s Post newspaper also reported that Zambia’s Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) wanted Yusuf for stealing from the Zambian government. Yusuf denies everything.

In 2001, Yusuf established Intratrek, a commodities company. South African media reports from 2010 say he had “exclusive distribution rights” to the Tara Klamp, described as “a questionable male circumcision device” used by the Kwazulu-Natal government without World Health Organisation approval.

One former associate, Anash Latchman, who worked with Intratrek from December 2006 to late 2007, was quoted as saying: “I found it strange that Intratrek had no employees.”

Despite this history, the Zimbabwe government has awarded Yusuf and Intratrek multi-million dollar contracts to restore some of the country’s most essential energy installations.

The deals awarded to Intratrek and its partners include; a $73 million refurbishment of the Harare power station; a $163 million project to restore Munyati power station; a new $128 million hydropower station at Gairezi; and a $202 million 100MW solar power plant in Gwanda.

Last week, a Parliamentary committee on energy heard how the State Procurement Board (SPB) had awarded tenders for power plants, prepaid meters and other services in energy to companies with no capacity to deliver.  SPB chairman Buzwani Mothobi has admitted to flaws in the tendering process and said the board would “relook” at some of the contracts.

The rot in energy contracts is best reflected in the way the Gwanda solar plant contract has been handled.

In 2014, Intratrek announced it was partnering a company called Green Solar Europa to build a solar power station for $350 million. However, after the project went to tender, the State Procurement Board awarded the contract to China Jiangxi Corporation. The company won the deal after presenting the lowest bid of $184 million.

Soon afterwards, ZPC approached Jiangxi and demanded that it partner Intratrek, a losing bidder. In its initial formal bid, Intratrek had charged $248 million for the project, but ZPC now said the company, together with another losing bidder ZTE, had somehow agreed to lower their prices to match Jiangxi’s.

To add to the confusion, the SPB then wrote to Jiangxi in July 2014, informing the company that the deal was in fact now cancelled, purportedly because Jiangxi had suddenly raised its price from $184 million to $207 million.

In October 2015, it was announced that Intratrek was now the winner of the Gwanda contract. When initially reported that month, the contract was said to be worth $171 million. However, at the signing of the deal, just two weeks later that October, the deal was now reported at $202 million.

There was no explanation on the $30 million discrepancy, or on how Intratrek had managed to swing from its initial announcement of $350 million, down to the $248 million in its first tender, further down to Jiangxi’s $184 million, and then, inside a two-week period, from $171 million to $202 million.

Intratrek itself has no experience in building power stations. It is one of many agents in Zimbabwe that act as middleman between the Zimbabwe government and the foreign contractors who get lucrative government deals.

Those familiar with SPB tender processes suggest outfits such as Intratrek get a cut from the contractors for placing bids and winning tenders on their behalf. The middlemen know how to work the state tendering system and get paid for that.

However, asked in a radio interview in April how he makes his money, Intratrek’s Zimbabwe representative Wicknell Chivayo claimed: “I’m surprised you would even ask me that. Because I’m all over the papers signing big deals. When you see me on ZBC signing a $123 million deal, I mean, that’s not a joke. What it means is that Zimbabwe Power Company is going to pay me $123 million, that’s what it means, literally.”

Zesa officals have recently raised concern over contracts awarded to Intratrek, but lawyers have warned them they face a lawsuit if they cancelled the deals.

Energy Minister Samuel Undenge insists all tenders have gone to the best bidders.  A Herald report, addressing criticism of the role of middlemen in tenders, said tender winners are “not compelled to demonstrate a track record in execution of energy projects”. These companies are only required to partner “credible, reliable competent technical partners”, the report said.

However, an investigation by The Source into Intratrek’s partners reveals a different picture; Some of the companies that won tenders are out of business, under investigation for fraud and bribery, or without experience in energy.

Green Solar Europa, which Intratrek lists as one of its key partners, is in fact bankrupt. According to 2015 filings before an insolvency court in Bremen, Germany, the process to liquidate the company began late last year. Claims against the company were to be presented by November 24 last year. A court sitting was scheduled for creditors on December 12.

Two other Intratrek partners, Indian firms Jaguar Overseas and Angelique International, are under authorities’ spotlight back home.

In January this year, Indian authorities raided the premises of former Indian diplomat Deepak Vohra over his links with Angelique International. India’s Enforcement Directorate (ED), the country’s anti-money laundering agency, says it is investigating Vohra for his possible role in the payment of kickbacks “to politicians in some African countries for obtaining contracts” on behalf of Angelique International.

The Indian authorities also raided six offices of Angelique International, seizing documents and finding large sums of various foreign currencies. The investigators are investigating the company for “line of credit fraud”.

Separately, the Indian Eximbank has raised concern over Angelique International and Jaguar Overseas. According to the bank, the two are part of a group of “little-known companies” that have benefitted from “a large number of hugely concessional lines of credit extended by India to highly indebted poor, low and middle income countries in Africa”. The bank says it has “pointed this out to the ministries of finance and external affairs (of India)”.

According to Angelique International, its Africa businesses account for 60 percent of the company’s revenues.

Angelique International has recently built a solar plant in Rwanda, in partnership with Bharat Heavy Electricals, another Indian company with a power contract in Zimbabwe. Angelique International and Bharat, through Intratrek, were awarded the $128 million contract for the Gairezi power plant in Zimbabwe.

Jaguar Overseas, which has a $73 million contract to refurbish the Harare thermal power station, is yet to raise money for the project. Despite this, Jaguar Overseas was still awarded the $163 million Munyati project. This raised concern within government, and a senior official is said to have raised a red flag over the Munyati contract and recommended a fresh tender. However SPB responded strongly in a letter, dismissing it as “irrational and illegal” and pressed on to award the contract.

There has been no response to our email to Jaguar Overseas for comment.

Because government has gone through middlemen, Zimbabwe is paying more for its power projects than it would have had it directly approached the contractors.

TEACHERS FUME OVER BONUSES

Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe general-secretary, Raymond Majongwe, says teachers are likely to stay away from work Tuesday when schools open following the government’s failure to pay them delayed 2015 bonuses.
The government had promised to pay the bonuses on April 30 but failed to deliver owing to the current harsh economic environment in the country that has caused slow revenue inflows into the national fiscus.
“There was not even a thread of explanation from anybody. It basically became speculative and as usual they want to use the social media to make us prisoners of hope,” said Majongwe.
Majongwe said what makes it worse is that they are being made second class citizens after the government paid all those that it fears like members of the national army and police force.
He said teachers are upset about the latest development and as a result some of them have even failed to send children to school due to lack of money.