GRACE MUGABE : FROM TYPIST TO KINGMAKER

First Lady's entry into politics has shaken Zanu PF to the core. Will she grab the throne?

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.

Thursday, 2 July 2015

VP CHALLENGE : EGG ON MADHUKU'S FACE

Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa is not Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, but was simply assigned by President Mugabe to oversee the functions of the ministry in terms of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, the Constitutional Court established yesterday.


Professor Lovemore Madhuku’s National Constitutional Assembly yesterday climbed down from its position that VPs Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mpoko were wearing two heads after being grilled by the nine-member bench.

Although NCA contested the appointment of the two VPs to administer the functions of two ministries, the matter collapsed when the court questioned the legal basis upon which VP Mnangagwa was being viewed as Justice Minister.

Advocate Michael Majuru, on behalf of the NCA, admitted that VP Mnangagwa was only sworn in as VP and that he never took oath to serve as Justice Minister. The NCA lawyer also conceded that the appointment of two VPs to replace Dr Joice Mujuru was also aboveboard.

That left the Constitutional Court with no other option, but to dismiss the application with costs.
Adv Majuru made a U-turn after Deputy Chief Justice Luke Malaba, questioned him on the proof that VP Mnangagwa was indeed a Minister of Justice.
He said: “If the court says VP is not a minister of Justice, I have no further submissions to make. I concede that,” he said. The court relied on Section 99 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe which gives President Mugabe power to assign a VP to oversee any ministry if need arises.
Section 99 reads: “The Vice Presidents assist the President in the discharge of his or her functions and perform any other function, including the administration of any ministry, department or Act of Parliament, that the President may assign to them.”

On the question of replacing one VP with two, Adv Majuru also agreed with the court that President Mugabe was correct and that it was lawful.
He also agreed with the court that VP Mnangagwa did not take oath as Justice Minister but only as VP.

Prof Madhuku argued that President Mugabe chose to work with one VP soon after his election and that replacing Cde Mujuru with two VPs was unlawful.

Meanwhile, the Constitutional Court yesterday deferred indefinitely the matter in which fired Chitungwiza councilor Dr Fredrick Mabamba, was contesting the constitutionality of his expulsion from council.

Dr Mabamba’s lawyer Mr Charles Chikore, is said to have renounced agency on Tuesday afternoon and the newly hired lawyers requested for more time to prepare for the matter.
The same court also deferred the case in which MDC-T is challenging the conducting of elections without effecting electoral reforms.

It was the court’s decision that there was need for the Attorney General Adv Prince Machaya to file his arguments first. herald

MARRIED MAN STABBED AFTER BRINGING NEW LOVER HOME

A woman from Emganwini suburb in Bulawayo allegedly went berserk and stabbed her husband once on his right arm after he brought a girlfriend to their matrimonial home.


 Sithabisile Dubazi, 39, was allegedly irked when her estranged husband, Alfred Mzizi, 51, brought his girlfriend to their place of residence while in the company of his brother and his wife.

Dubazi and Mzizi are on separation. The woman appeared before magistrate Tancy Dube charged with physical abuse.

She pleaded not guilty to the charge and was remanded out of custody to today for trial.
Prosecuting, Sibekithemba Dube said on Saturday at around 6PM, Mzizi went to his place of residence with his brother.
He said Mzizi was accompanied by his lover while his brother brought his wife.
“Upon arrival at the house, Dubazi, who already knew Mzizi’s girlfriend, got angry with the behaviour of her husband.

“She demanded to know why he had brought his girlfriend to their house,” said Dube.
Dubazi, the court heard, started punching Mzizi all over his body. The man did not fight back.

“While assaulting Mzizi, Dubazi was also shouting that her husband was disrespectful.
“She said the man had disrespected her by bringing his girlfriend to their house,” said the prosecutor.

The court heard that Dubazi went to the kitchen where she took a knife that she used to stab Mzizi once on his right hand. Dube told the court that Mzizi sustained a deep cut and a swollen forehead due to the assault. chronicle

JILTED MAN LEAVES EX FOR DEAD

A GWERU man went berserk and butchered his wife ripping off her chest in a gruesome domestic violence case.

Felix Chimwanda of Ascot high-density suburb allegedly left Agnes Makuvise for dead.
Makuvise narrated her ordeal from her hospital bed.

“I was at home in the evening with my young sister whom l stay with. My ex-husband came to my house and asked that we talk outside. We then started talking while walking towards Ascot Stadium. He suddenly drew a knife and stabbed me. He wanted to slit my throat but l managed to fight him,” she said.
“I then passed out and only woke up in early hours of the morning and l crawled more than a kilometre to a nearby road so that passers-by could help me,” she said.

Midlands medical superintendent Dr Fabian Mashingaidze confirmed that Makuvise was admitted at the hospital with severe stab wounds.

Midlands police spokesperson Inspector Joel Goko could not be reached for comment.
Makuvise sustained deep cuts at the back, on her face, hands and a deep laceration on the chest as a result of the assault.

CHIEFS TO GET FREE LAW COURSES AT UNI

Great Zimbabwe University and the Zimbabwe Chiefs’ Council have agreed a landmark deal that will see the institution of higher learning offering free law courses to 272 chiefs in the country as part of efforts to improve justice delivery at the lower-tier level.

The inaugural group of chiefs to undergo law training is expected to start classes at the beginning of next year with graduates receiving certificates after 12 months of academic drilling in basic law.

The studies will be conducted at GZU’s Herbert Chitepo Law School that was officially opened by President Mugabe at the end of last year.

In an interview on Tuesday, Dean of the Faculty, Mr Victor Nkiwane said plans to train traditional leaders in law were now at an advanced stage.

“We are close to concluding our discussions with the leadership of the country’s traditional leaders while at the same time working on the subjects that will be taught because we want the chiefs to also have a say on what they will be taught,’’ he said.
“The courses will be done over a year with graduates getting certificates. We decided to offer the courses to our traditional leaders for free because they play a key role in the country’s justice delivery system,’’ he said.

Mr Nkiwane said among the courses to be taught was an Introduction to Law, Ethics and Court Procedures to help the primary courts to handle cases better.

“Traditional leaders play a key role in the administration of justice and we will teach all the country’s chiefs in batches because we want uniformity in the way our traditional leaders handle cases at their courts,’’ he said.

Zimbabwe Chiefs’ Council president Chief Fortune Charumbira said there was need for more recognition for the role played by traditional leaders in the country’s justice delivery system.

He said besides imparting legal skills to traditional leaders, there was also a need to avail more resources to traditional courts to improve their operations.

He said an estimated 60 percent of all court cases in Zimbabwe were handled by traditional leaders at their primary courts every year.

Traditional leaders have come under fire for abusing traditional courts by handing unrealistic sentences, a practice partly blamed on the chiefs’ ignorance of the law. herald

GRACE : ZIMASSET TARGETS CAN BE MET

The First Lady Grace Mugabe says the success of the Government’s economic blueprint, Zim-Asset, lies solely in the hands of Zimbabweans.

Speaking in Kadoma yesterday, the First Lady said it was through good infrastructure that the country could attract investors.

“We can reach that point. The private sector, like we’re witnessing today, is key to the development of this country. We develop things on our own and we don’t look up to foreigners because if you see them coming, they are coming to loot our resources,” she said, speaking at the commissioning of earthmoving equipment worth $3 million and a ground-breaking ceremony for the Macsherp Housing Scheme.

The Macsherp Housing Scheme is set to benefit about 3 000 low-income earners and the equipment, supplied by XGMA Zimbabwe, will be used to service the stands.

The equipment included bulldozers, a grader, excavators and tipper trucks. Said the First Lady: “It’s now a dream come true to many households to own a property in town, a rare phenomenon for the black majority during the colonial era. Such milestone achievements in our lifetime are worth celebrating.” She urged businesspeople in various towns to emulate the initiative by Macsherp Holdings to alleviate the shortage of accommodation.
The Government is targeting to build 313 000 units by 2018.

GOMWE TRIAL FAILS TO BEGIN

The trial of former Zanu-PF Harare provincial youth chairman Godwin Gomwe and seven others accused of extorting over $46 000 from eight housing cooperatives in Glen Norah using the First Lady Grace Mugabe’s name, failed to kick off yesterday after his lawyer asked for more time to prepare his defence.
Gomwe is now represented by Advocate Thembinkosi Magwaliba. Adv Magwaliba argued that he received State papers last week and was not able to prepare a written defence outline for Gomwe.

“I do not understand why the State is in a hurry to proceed with this matter. My client has a right to choose a lawyer of his own and I need ample time to explain the charges to him.
“Proceeding with this matter today jeopardises the first accused’s right to adequately prepare for trial,” he said.

Prosecutor Ms Venencia Mutake argued that Adv Magwaliba was deliberately delaying the commencement of trial.

“They were served with the State papers on time this is just a delaying tactic. The State is prepared to start the trial today,” she said.

Magistrate Mr Tendai Mahwe, ruled in favour of Adv Magwaliba and postponed the matter to July 9.
“It is clear that you have to take instructions from your client and you also need ample time to craft a defence outline for the accused in order for justice to prevail,” he said.

Gomwe alias Mambo (34) is jointly charged with Muchineripi Mupindu alias Ginya (36), Fidelis Ndaradza alias Brigadier (32), Haruwandi Munyawiri alias Baya (46), Hamphrey Madenyika (29), Josephine Hadziindi (59), Norah Toronga (38) and Moses Handiseni.

The other seven are being represented by Mr Shelton Mahuni of Mahuni and Matutu Attorneys. They are all facing three counts of extortion.
The State alleged that on February 11, housing cooperatives namely NRZ, Mudadirwa Zvobgo, Tenzi Tinzwei, Spring Field, Archgrace, Palmar Vision, Westgin, First Avenue, Green Image and Ingoni, all registered under the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises, were allocated 300 residential stands by the City of Harare.

Gomwe allegedly mobilised 30 youths and proceeded to the construction site and informed them that the land once belonged to the late Amai Sally Mugabe. Gomwe added that the land was owned by Amai Grace Mugabe before he was chased away.

On May 10, Gomwe and his accomplices went back to the site ordering them to leave.
He insisted that the land belonged to the First Lady.

A fracas ensued, prompting the complainants to approach the High Court for a provisional order authorising them to develop the land.

Gomwe allegedly mobilised 80 more youths and forcibly removed the complainants from the site. They demanded four stands or $20 000. However, Archgrace Housing Cooperative was not included because its members were police officers.

Operations were stopped after complainants failed to raise the money. This did not go down well with Godfrey Chivasa, the chairperson of Perfect Hope Housing Cooperative because he had already given the suspects cash and 19 stands as kickbacks.
The suspects were given another $25 000.

The complainants were ordered to affiliate to an unregistered consortium named Dr Amai Grace Mugabe to avert further trouble.
Each cooperative was to pay $120 as joining fee and was issued with receipts inscribed Amai Dr Grace Mugabe Housing Consortium.

Handiseni stopped operations again saying Gomwe had not benefited from the $25 000 they had paid.
The complainants offered $5 000, which Gomwe said was not enough for a senior official like him and demanded $10 000 more.

The money was allegedly handed over to one Kuda, who is said to be the president of the Zimbabwe Council of Students Union (ZICOSU) who later handed it over to Gomwe. herald

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

GRACE TAUNTS DIASPORANS : YOU WILL BE DEPORTED

First Lady Grace Mugabe has taunted diasporans who claimed that her husband wanted to kill them saying they now faced deportation from the UK where there are no longer needed.

Grace said the UK government planned to sack African nurses, meaning Zimbabwean nurses will have to return home to face their lies.

Grace who was speaking in Kadoma at the ground breaking ceremony of a housing project said many diasporans initially behaved as if they were not interested in the land. But many have now been cheated out of their land.

“Some refused to take land from white people saying they pray, now they want land,” she said. Grace also said that Prosecutor General Johannes Tomana must be fired.
She condemned child marriages saying “Unopihwa mbeu onoidyara mugwanga, Pane chinobuda. Inyaya hombe iyi!.Haungafugurisi mwana ane 12 years woti fugura ndikuise mbeu! Aiwa!” Pasi nenyaya dzakadaro!”

 “Men makapihwa mbeu yeupenyu and they are spraying it pese pese.
Grace also said she had seen a vast difference in the Vice Presidents as compared to former VP Joice Mujuru. She said she had met Mnangagwa and Mphoko countless times to talk about development “and they take notes which differentiates them from the previous Vice President.”


FIRE GUTS GONO FARMHOUSE

Property worth thousands of dollars went up in smoke today at retired Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor, Gideon Gono's house in Borrowdale.

A double storey house worth more than $200 000 was razed to the ground and only the intervention of the Harare Fire Brigade service prevented further damage.


ZANU PF GOES AFTER MUJURU ALLIES

As Zanu PF’s factional and succession wars continue to rage relentlessly, the party’s hardliners are ratcheting up the pressure on former Vice President Joice Mujuru and her perceived allies in a ruthless and renewed bid to defeat them once and for all ahead of the eagerly anticipated 2018 national elections.

Well-placed sources told the Daily News yesterday that the hardliners (names withheld) who are allegedly masterminding this “thuggery” under the guise of protecting President Robert Mugabe, although in reality it was known that they were positioning themselves for life after the nonagenarian’s time in office — had resolved to “completely destroy” Mujuru and her main supporters ahead of the 2018 polls.

“These guys have now employed scotched earth tactics in their desperate bid to completely destroy Mai Mujuru and all her allies so that they are not a political threat come 2018. They are afraid of the knowledge that these liberation struggle stalwarts have of Zanu PF.
“It has not helped that (opposition leader Morgan) Tsvangirai now says he could work with Mai Mujuru, while the likes of (former Presidential Affairs minister Didymus) Mutasa and others are threatening to spill the beans on Zanu PF. They (Zanu PF hardliners) want to decapitate the whole group (Mujuru camp).

It’s very sad,” a senior Zanu PF official said.
He added that anyone identified with Mujuru and the “original” Zanu PF formation that uses the slogan People First was targeted “for complete annihilation” which would see all of them either facing criminal charges or financial ruin.

Outspoken former regional minister for Masvingo, Kudakwashe Bhasikiti — a perceived Mujuru ally — told the Daily News yesterday that he was “mystified” why his successor Shuvai Mahofa had ordered that his farm be seized and set aside as grazing land.

He revealed that war veterans, as well as others who were too young to have participated in Zimbabwe’s liberation war, had already descended illegally on his farm in Rutenga, going on to remove the fence as they apparently enjoyed the support of Mahofa.

A letter dated June 24, from Mwenezi District, which is in possession of the Daily News, instructs Bhasikiti “to remove the fence on the portion of Umbono Ranch”.
“The decision was arrived at by the provincial lands committee after the resolution was forwarded by the Mwenezi District Lands Committee....you are instructed to treat this as a matter of urgency.

“We request the fence to have been removed by Friday 26 of June 2015,” reads part of the letter undersigned by an S. Chamisa, the acting district administrator, as well as the district lands officer, a T. Makonya.
But a defiant Bhasikiti said while his political enemies in Zanu PF were thinking that “they are punishing me, the truth is they are reversing the few gains we had under the land reform programme”.

“When I confronted the DA he said Mahofa is the one who instructed them to take my farm. Zanu PF is not following the law and they have imported that into government. Now they are cancelling my offer letter. On Friday people took my fence and we reported the matter to the police under case number Mwenezi 81/06/15.

“When the police made their investigations, they established that war veterans had taken the fence, but the suspects were not arrested or questioned. It is clear there is abuse of the law by top Zanu PF officials,” Bhasikiti said.

Revealing “the fact” that there were still many white farmers operating in the province, the former minister said it was “both sad and laughable” that many top government officials were allegedly being bribed by “these rich farmers and are now targeting blacks contrary to the president’s position that land is for blacks”.

Similarly, Temba Mliswa — the voluble former Zanu PF chairperson for Mashonaland West — is under siege and facing myriad challenges, including a police probe on allegations of looting equipment under the government’s controversial fast track land reforms and farm mechanisation programme.

Already, police have sealed off his warehouse in Harare as investigations that might lead to his arrest continue, with Zanu PF insiders revealing to the Daily News yesterday that more former top Zanu PF officials would face the same fate.

Mliswa denied the theft allegations yesterday, describing them “as nothing more than politics”. On his part, Mutasa is under pressure from party bigwigs to relinquish some of his properties, in what observers say is “a clear case of victimisation” now that the former close Mugabe confidante is out of favour with the nonagenarian.

In the meantime, the Daily News has established that former Zanu PF Harare provincial chairperson, Amos Midzi, was reeling in debt before he was found dead at his farm in Beatrice just outside Harare.

Apparently, his economic fortunes “took a turn for the worse the moment the party discarded him like a condom”.

“This is a ruthless campaign by the hardliners in their evil bid to silence all former party members that are linked to Mujuru. They will find themselves under investigations and will lose their property for one reason or the other as the system works nefariously to silence and destroy them,” another senior Zanu PF official said.


Analysts say while party hardliners are now taking the war to the Mujuru camp in this brutal fashion, it was Mugabe himself who set the ball rolling when he indicated earlier in the year that Mujuru and her major supporters like Mutasa risked arrest on a litany of charges.

HARARE TOWN CLERK FORCED OUT

HARARE town clerk Tendai Mahachi was yesterday sent on indefinite leave to pave way for officials to investigate a slew of allegations including that he is frustrating salary cuts for overpaid executives.

Mayor Bernard Manyenyeni told a full council meeting yesterday evening the decision was made to facilitate investigations after council felt Mahachi’s presence was stalling progress on a number of issues.

Several councillors and Mahachi said they were caught unaware by the decision.
“There will never be anything personal, I have a professional relationship and will maintain it,” Manyenyeni said.

He said the need to plan Mahachi’s succession without interference also influenced the decision.
“There are issues to be handled including the succession plan and that can be handled without him,” the mayor said.

“I have given the town clerk the letter now and the letter will be delivered to the ministry (Local Government).

“It’s just by coincidence that I made the announcement at the full council meeting as it coincided with the end of the month where I was meant to announce the decision.”
“Those are some of the issues including executive salaries and we want to make it clear that he (Mahachi) is the biggest beneficiary and is therefore an interested part. Let us allow processes without him.

“The leave, as we speak, is indefinite, no hard feelings. This is not a suspension, but we want to move forward.”

But Mahachi, who was surprised by Manyenyeni’s action, threatened to take up the matter “somewhere”, saying the move was “illegal” and “unheard of”.

“I don’t even know what’s happening. I think in there, he made two statements; one of them is on a succession plan in my absence,” he said.

“This is the first of its kind in Zimbabwe. I don’t think you will find anywhere this will happen again. Legally, it doesn’t make sense, there is no council resolution, he just took it from the hat when he mentioned it, that is why he said you are on leave.”

He said the government was dealing with his succession plan and the mayor had jumped the gun.
“The organisation has been working on a succession plan. As a matter of fact, he wrote that to the minister requesting for input and the minister took it to the Local Government Board that is dealing with the issue,” Mahachi added. “This is very unusual. When you see the cited reasons, for me, it’s unbelievable. Also you can ask councillors, I think they were also taken by surprise. We will look into the matter and see.”

Mahachi said it was not about performance as it came minutes after the full council had commended him and his team for providing street lighting and clearing workers’ salary arrears, among others.
Human resources committee chairman Wellington Chikombo also said he was not involved in the matter.

“I don’t know what’s happening, we are still to get confirmation, but the mayor said he sent him on leave, that is his decision,” Chombo said. “It is the mayor who sent him on leave.”

Deputy mayor Thomas Muzuva said Manyenyeni had the authority to make such a decision since the town clerk reported to him.

This is not the first time that Mahachi has been suspended by Manyenyeni.
In January last year, the mayor was left with egg on the face after Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo rescinded the decision to suspend Mahachi over “obscene” salaries and allowances.

Mahachi was often accused of being Chombo’s blue-eyed boy after he on several occasions ignored some council resolutions following the minister’s directives.
He has become unpopular with the MDC-T-dominated council for listening more to Chombo instead of councillors.

The latest clash between Mahachi and councillors was on the issue of vendors’ relocation where the town clerk was accused of taking instructions from the Zanu PF government.

Meanwhile, chamber secretary Josephine Ncube has been appointed acting town clerk. newsday

US ATTACKS TSVANGIRAI POLL BOYCOTT

ZIMBABWEAN opposition parties must participate in elections than grumble from the sidelines, a senior United States Congressman said this week.

In what seemed to be confirmation of the US’s growing displeasure at opposition strongman Morgan Tsvangirai’s leadership style, Gregory Simpkins, a director in the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organisations, said local opposition parties cannot criticise a system that they were not part of.

Tsvangiria’s MDC-T party has declared it will not take part in any polls without electoral reforms amid reports that the veteran trade unionist had fallen out of favour with most of his party’s Western funders.

“Oftentimes we have heard the opposition saying it is tough to compete, they have to find a way of being effective rather than just saying it is too tough to compete so we are not going to take part. If you do not take part in an election process, how can you criticise something that you did not even test?” Simpkins queried.

“When you test the process you can say we tried to register our candidates or observers were turned away, you can point to examples. If you are not a part of it at all, then it is as good as there is no opposition.”

Tsvangirai has been battling to ward-off criticism of his decision with accusations he literally donated 16 parliamentary seats to Zanu PF in last month’s by-elections triggered by his recall of “rebel MPs”.
Simpkins is part of a two-man US Congress delegation currently in the country on an “investigatory mission” to find ways of mending relations between Harare and Washington.

“For us sometimes the Democratic Party or the Republican Party is successful, sometimes they are partially successful. When we lose we do not take to the streets, we do not always go to the courts, we do not get angry, but we go back, consider what happened and prepare for the next election and that is what you have to do,” he said.

He also said the US political system was not built on personalities.
“However, when you start a political party in a country that is relatively new, very often the personalities override the ideology of the party, people vote for the person, ethnic groups. You feel 
that you started something and think that you best understand how things are supposed to be done, but over time you realise that does not work,” he said.

“It takes time and African countries are not going to do that overnight either. It takes time for people to realise that it is not all about me.

“I think there is a lot of frustration on losing elections and the thinking that the people leading the party are not serving their interests so they leave thinking they can do it better.”


He said it was important for leaders who would have failed in elections to give way for others to try. newsday

MLISWA GOES TO COURT OVER SEIZED PROPERTY

FORMER Hurungwe West MP Temba Mliswa yesterday filed an urgent chamber application at the High Court seeking to stop the auctioning of his property that was attached on Monday over a $2,7 million debt he owes CBZ Bank.

Mliswa’s lawyer Tariro Machiridza confirmed the development saying the default judgment used by the bank to attach the property from his farm in Karoi was irregularly obtained.

“It appears from our reading of the record that the said order was irregularly so obtained in that it’s a default judgment yet our client had filed his appearance to defend and requested for further particulars which the other party did not respond to but went on to obtain a default judgment,” Machiridza said.

“We have since approached the High Court for redress.”According to the court papers under case number HC8835/14, CBZ Bank filed a lawsuit against Mliswa and his firm Saltlakes Holdings demanding payment of $2 745 092. The money was loaned to him as an overdraft facility.

The cash, according to the papers, was meant for Mliswa’s working capital requirements for the 2011 tobacco buying season and also as a carryover of the 2010 tobacco buying season facility.
CBZ said Mliswa signed an unlimited guarantee where he bound himself as surety and co-principal debtor with the bank.


The attached property included 108 head of cattle, farm implements, equipment and household goods. The urgent application is yet to be set down for hearing. newsday

MUGABE, OBAMA MEETING IN ETHIOPIA : NOT A CHANCE

UNITED States President Barack Obama will not be meeting President Robert Mugabe on his last official visit to Africa this month despite his itinerary including a visit to the African Union (AU) headquarters.

Mugabe is the AU chairman and has made it a point to attend every high-level event involving the continental body since he landed the post in January. He also chairs Sadc. Mugabe has made over 15 trips since his return from annual leave in January. Last Thursday he travelled to Mozambique for that country’s 40th independence celebrations.

Obama is scheduled to visit Kenya and Ethiopia later this month, where he will tour the AU headquarters and meet the secretariat. But Foreign Affairs secretary Joey Bimha told NewsDay yesterday that the government had not “received any indication” from Obama that he would want to meet Mugabe during his visit.

“There are no arrangements (for the two to meet). This is basically a bilateral visit by Obama to Ethiopia and maybe the AU leaders he is talking about are those leading the (AU) Commission,” he said.

“We have not received any indication regarding that, the Commission (headed by Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma) basically runs the AU.” Visiting US Congressman Gregory Simpkins was evasive over the issue.

“Perhaps, I do not think he (Obama) is going to avoid him (Mugabe),” he said. The US embassy in Harare said it was not aware of any meeting between the two leaders. “President Obama will meet with AU leadership. However, we do not yet have any further details about those meetings,” the embassy said in a statement.

“What we do know is that this visit underscores US efforts to work with the countries and citizens of sub-Saharan Africa to accelerate economic growth, strengthen democratic institutions, and improve security.

“The visit will represent President Obama’s fourth trip to Africa since becoming President. He will travel to Ethiopia following his visit to Kenya for bilateral meetings.”The embassy said Obama will also take time to attend the 6th annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Ethiopia.

Simpkins insisted that while the US recognises Mugabe as Zimbabwe’s President as elected in the disputed 2013 polls, he needed to reciprocate overtures for normalisation of relations.

“We have issues with the way the elections (in 2013) were run, but nobody has ever said he is not President of Zimbabwe. The conduct of the elections denied people the right to freely participate.
“We have reached out to the Zimbabwean government, but there has to be a corresponding hand coming out of the government.

“It is important to note that we have similar issues with the Ethiopian government, but at least they have been willing to dialogue.” Simpkins accused authorities in Harare of being stuck in the past. newsday

NKOMO TURNING IN HIS GRAVE

LATE Vice-President Joshua Nkomo must be turning in his grave at the present political instability, fissures and indiscipline within the ruling Zanu PF, as he was a strict disciplinarian and a stabilising factor in both the party and government, political analysts said yesterday.

Zimbabwe today commemorates 16 years after the death of Nkomo and analysts were unanimous Father Zimbabwe, as he was affectionately known, would not be happy with the state of the country were he still alive.

Political and social analyst Ibbo Mandaza, who republished Nkomo’s biography The Story of my Life, described Nkomo as legendary.

“He is the legendary Father Zimbabwe who was regrettably ill-treated until the Unity Accord,” he said. “He could have been another (Unita rebel leader, Jonas) Savimbi, but chose not to.
“He chose national unity.People like (former Zanu secretary-general) Edgar Tekere and Nkomo chose national interests above their own.

“They had capacity to have this country in flames, at war, as happened in Mozambique and Angola, but they did not.”

One of Nkomo’s longest-serving lieutenants and ex-Home Affairs minister Dumiso Dabengwa said had the late Vice-President been alive, he would have quit government angry at the economic decline.
“I am sure he would have quit because nobody listened to him,” he said.

“He would never have waited to preside over such a calamitous collapse. Nkomo had a vision that led him to set up projects across the country, some of which have been hijacked by the government and run into the ground.”

Political analyst Eldred Masunungure was more scathing. “Nkomo would have been an unhappy man. He would have adopted the position taken by Cephas Msipa (former PF Zapu secretary-general and ex-Midlands governor),” he opined.

“If you want to see Nkomo and understand how he would have frowned at the current situation in the country and the ruling party, look and listen to Msipa. He is the latter-day version of the late Vice-President.”

Masunungure, while admitting Nkomo would have been dismayed by the economic implosion in the country, however, argued acrimony in the ruling party was omnipresent.
“He was someone who seemed to celebrate order and not anarchy,” he said.
“He would have been alarmed by the lawlessness a year after his death over the land issue as well as the collapse of the social and economic system.

“But Nkomo would not have been much surprised by the convulsions in the ruling party, having witnessed the deadly party re-alignments that rocked both nationalist movements Zapu and Zanu and their armed wings Zipra and Zanla, respectively, in the 1970s.

“Elements of that turbulence are evident today and these are developments he would have been familiar with.” Critics point to the farm invasion that began in 2000 in tracing the genesis of the Zimbabwean political, social and economic crisis.

Legal expert and analyst, Alex Magaisa, said while Nkomo would have been appalled at the current situation, he was most likely going to support Mugabe regarding the land question.
“Joshua Nkomo was a well-meaning man with a big heart and a wise head,” he said.
“We must not forget that he was a nationalist who believed very strongly that land should be restored to black Zimbabweans.

“In that regard, I suspect he would have agreed with Mugabe’s land policy.” Nkomo, commonly known as Father Zimbabwe, died on July 1 1999 after a long battle with prostate cancer.
Revered across the length and breadth of the country, Nkomo was seen as more grounded and stable than the extreme President Robert Mugabe.

In 1982, Mugabe — at the height of his political feud with Nkomo, a few years after independence — said of his then Home Affairs minister: “Zapu and its leader, Dr Joshua Nkomo, are like a cobra in a house. The only way to deal effectively with a snake is to strike and destroy its head”.

And Nkomo, like the statesman that he was, in 1983, wrote a stinging letter to then Prime Minister Mugabe from his new base in the United Kingdom after reportedly skipping the border through Botswana.


“I write because I feel that our country is in danger of complete disintegration, to the detriment of all its citizens now living and of generations to come,” he said, a statement that remains relevant to this day. southern eye

FOURTH PUPIL VANISHES IN BULAWAYO



POLICE in Bulawayo are cracking their heads as they try to solve a cryptic puzzle where school pupils disappeared mostly in Emganwini and Nkulumane on a monthly basis for a period stretching from February to May.


Yesterday, The Chronicle published the story of three pupils that went missing in the city under different but equally baffling circumstances. The police said they were searching for Nontobeko Yolanda Nkomo, 10, of Nkulumane 12, Alington Shereni, 15, and Cyril Ndlovu, 15, both of Emganwini.

Now police have added a fourth name: 18-year-old Thabo Ncube, a former Founders High School pupil from Emganwini. Inspector Mandlenkosi Moyo said Thabo went missing on February 12, a day after telling family members he was going to his former school to collect his O’ Level results. That was the last they saw of him.

Cyril Ndlovu, 15, a Form 3 pupil at Hamilton High School, also from the same suburb, went missing on March 1. Insp Moyo said: “Thabo Ncube is of medium built, about 1,7 metres tall, dark in complexion. He was last seen at around 10AM on February 12 going to collect his Ordinary Level results at school and never returned home.”

Cyril was last seen on March 1 at around 8.30AM. He was wearing a green T-Shirt, a black track bottom and Adidas takkies. Police are also searching for two other missing children, Nontobeko Yolanda Nkomo, 10, of Nkulumane 12, Alington Shereni, 15, of Emgwanini. Nkulumane and Emgwanini, which are neighbouring suburbs, are under Nkulumane Police Station’s policing radius.
Nontobeko, a Grade 6 pupil at Mgoqo Primary School, went missing on May 26 and Alington was last seen on April 30.

Said Inspector Moyo: “Nontobeko Nkomo is medium built, about 1.2m tall, dark in complexion. She was last seen on May 28 wearing a bottle green pair of trousers, bottle green jersey, bottle green blouse, black shoes, green socks and a green woollen hat. She was carrying a pink and grey satchel.
“She was last seen at around 9AM on May 28.”

The Bulawayo police spokesperson said the second child, Alington, a boy, was last seen on April 30 at around 8AM. He said Alington is about 1.2m tall, light in complexion, and of medium build.
Alington, a Form 2 pupil at a college in the Bulawayo city centre, left home after he was sent to buy bread at a local grocery shop.

“Alington was last seen wearing a white vest, brown bottom and blue shoes. We’re appealing to anyone with information on the whereabouts of the four missing children to contact the nearest police station. Alternatively, they can contact ZRP Nkulumane on landline 09-481145.”
Tsebiso Ncube, Thabo’s father, told The Chronicle that his son’s disappearence was traumatising family members.
“My son left home on a Tuesday morning going to collect his results. He came back later in the afternoon saying he had failed to get them because he owed the school a textbook which he shared with his friend who stayed in Nketa,” Ncube said.

“On the following morning, his mother gave him transport money to drop off at his friend’s place so that they go together to the school and solve the textbook issue. That was the last we saw of him.”
Thabo’s mother, Botshiwe Ncube, said she called the school and teachers confirmed that Thabo had indeed passed through the school but did not collect his results.

“We confronted the friend who denied sharing a book with Thabo. The boy said he had last seen him on the day they wrote their last examination paper. We then reported the matter to the police.”
Friends said Thabo was a “quiet and reserved boy”.

At the home of the other missing boy, Cyril, his brother, Sipho Ndlovu, told The Chronicle that when his young brother went missing he was not at home. He, however, said that their mother told him that Cyril had left home in the company of their neighbour identified as Handsome.

“She said Cyril left home with Handsome and they seemed like people who were on their usual errands, but he never returned home. The following morning, we heard that he had slept over at Handsome’s place, which is a few houses from ours,” he said.

“When we asked Handsome’s uncle of the two’s whereabouts, he said Handsome had left for Inyathi while Cyril is alleged to have told him he was going to South Africa. Sometime in May, we heard that the two had been seen at Amarula Night Club in Emganwini where it’s alleged they told patrons they were now working at a mine in Inyathi.”

Sipho said the family got really worried when Handsome returned home without Cyril. Handsome told the family that he was by himself when he went to Inyathi. “Handsome said he was never in the company of Cyril. He said they parted ways when he went to Inyathi while Cyril headed for South Africa,” said Sipho.

Irene Shawarira, Nontobeko’s mother, told The Chronicle on Monday that her daughter had left for school as usual and she was expecting to see her later at home.

“Ntoe left for school in the morning and at around 9AM I received a call from her teacher informing us that she hadn’t returned to the classroom from the grounds,” said Shawarira.
“We tried to look for her around the school. We even asked her friends from school but they didn’t know where she had gone.”

Shawarira said she called in the police who have been searching for her since.
Alington’s mother, Lavender Kumire, told The Chronicle that she had no idea about the whereabouts of her son.

She said: “I gave him $5 and sent him to buy bread at around 8AM on April 30. He never came back.
“I noticed after about 30 minutes that he was not yet home. I sent his siblings to check on him at the shops but they couldn’t locate him.”
She said she got worried and decided to go and look for her son on her own, but it was in vain.

CHOMBO BLOCKS REDCLIFF EVICTIONS

LOCAL Government minister Ignatius Chombo has come to the rescue of hundreds of Redcliff residents after he blocked their eviction from their council-rented homes over rent arrears.

Chombo, in a directive marked CX/129 issued on April 13, instructed all local authorities to immediately transfer ownership of all council-rented properties to all tenants who have leased the homes for a period of 20 years.

“In terms of Section 313 of the Urban Councils Act . . . the Hon Minister directs that all local authorities facilitate issuance of title deeds to genuine and deserving tenants who have rented council accommodation for a period of more than 20 years,” part of the directive reads.

“The intention of government was that sitting tenants would benefit and be granted title deeds to guarantee security of tenure and absolute ownership of the property. The properties were offered to sitting tenants who, at the time, did not own a house/flat in any urban area in Zimbabwe,” Chombo said in justifying his move.

Redcliff Municipality has been pushing for the eviction of its unpaid tenants and put the houses on the open market.

Last month, Redcliff mayor Freddy Kapuya’s council issued eviction notices to 820 families, accusing the predominantly Ziscosteel employees of failing to pay rent.
Redcliff deputy mayor Vincent Masiyiwa, however, said his council had not yet received the directive.

“I don’t know how long it takes for a directive to be delivered to our council, but from April to now, we are yet to receive it. However, I have always been opposed to the eviction and sale of these properties because it would have displaced many poor people and paved way to rich members of our society to amass property and exploit the poor. If this directive does exist, it will be welcome news for our people,” he said.

Kwekwe mayor Matenda Madzoke said his council had set up a committee to look into the implications of Chombo’s directive.

“It is before us and will be discussed in council soon, as you are aware matters in committee as still confidential so I can say much,” he said.


Kwekwe, however, disposed most of their council-rented properties in the early 1980s and was left with few houses reserved for its top and middle managers. newsday

ZANU PF MP MOCKED AT FUNERAL


MDC-T Manicaland provincial spokesperson and Mutasa Central MP Trevor Saruwaka yesterday dressed down Zanu PF’s Mutasa South MP Irene Zindi labelling her an opportunist who won the 2013 elections by capitalising on the confusion in the MDC-T camp. Saruwaka made the remarks in Zindi’s presence during the burial of former Mutare mayor Misheck Kagurabadza at Mundenda village in Manica Bridge near Mutare.

“Mr President Tsvangirai, the reason why Honourable Kagurabadza is not the sitting Member of Parliament for Mutasa South constituency is because of the divisions in the party,’’ he said.
Kagurabadza contested the seat on an MDC-T ticket and lost to Zindi in 2013 after the opposition party’s Regai Tsunga contested for the same seat as an independent candidate.

“It is one of the seats we defeated ourselves because if you add the total number of votes garnered by Tsunga and Kagurabadza, it’s clear that Zindi would not have won the seat, so she is the beneficiary of divisions in our party,” he said.

Tsvangirai also took a swipe at Zindi before praising her for setting aside political differences to attend the funeral.

“I was laughing at Zindi asking her whether she was a Gamatox or Weevil,” he said. “Anyway, it is a good gesture because we should be united in mourning. We did not doubt Kagurabadza’s capacity and past when we wanted him to be the mayor of Mutare and he brought various changes in the city.”

Zindi later described Tsvangirai and Saruwaka’s comments as uncalled for and in bad taste. “I think the jibe by Tsvangirai was uncalled for and mischievous and also to Saruwaka it was also a mischievous comment that I won the seat because of divisions,” she said.

MUTASA : I AM READY FOR JAIL

FORMER Presidential Affairs minister Didymus Mutasa has vowed he was ready to go to jail for spilling Zanu PF secrets after his ouster in December last year.

Mutasa has been warned in the State media that he risked arrest for allegedly violating the Official Secrets Act after he revealed that Zanu PF rigged the 2013 harmonised elections. State media roped in political analysts who said the former Zanu PF secretary for administration was sworn to secrecy when he served in government and cannot divulge them after he was fired.

But Mutasa told NewsDay the government would need to prove its case before a court of law.

“I am not afraid of being arrested as long as they tell me my crime,” he said. “There is also the issue of whether what was reported is what I said. The reporter may have written what they wanted and not what I said. I am a law-abiding citizen and I do not think there is anyone like me. I do not even have a traffic offence.”

The former Zanu PF strongman two weeks ago was quoted saying Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) operatives were deployed in all sectors of the economy to gather sensitive information.

“Of course, you know that some waiters in hotels work for the CIO,” he was quoted as saying. “Your phones are listened to a lot. The CIO is huge and it produces many reports. From the UN (United Nations) there will regularly be a report. A report about the British. Or India. Not very good reports really. I had to read them. They made me tired.”

This, according to “legal experts”, exposed the government’s security apparatus and made it “vulnerable”. Section 4 of the Official Secrets Act makes it a criminal offence for any person who has in his possession or under his control any secret official code, document or information that has been entrusted in his confidence to him by a person holding an office in the service of the State; or has obtained; or has held office in the service of the State to communicate or publish it to any person.

The offence carries a 20-year jail term and if found guilty, Mutasa, who seemed unfazed, could spend the last years of his life in jail. newsday

WOMEN'S MINISTRY GETS ONLY $310K FROM TREASURY

The Ministry of Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development has been unable to undertake its programmes since the beginning of the year as Treasury has so far released only $310 193 out of an approved budget of $6,550 million.

This is considerably less than what President Mugabe wastes on a single foreign trip. 
Permanent secretary in the ministry, Dr Perpetua Gumbo said this while presenting oral evidence to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development in Parliament yesterday.

“The amount that the Ministry of Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development has received from Treasury is only 5 percent of the 2015 approved budget.

“Monitoring and evaluation of projects continue to suffer due to unavailability of vehicles as the ones that are in the ministry’s pool are in a deteriorated state and need major services which currently cannot be undertaken as no funds have been availed by Treasury,” said Dr Gumbo.
She said the ministry remained optimistic that they would receive funds to carry out programmes.

“Expenditure to date should be at 50 percent of the approved annual budget but since it is still at 5 percent, it is doubtful whether the ministry will get all the remaining funds to pursue its mandate,” said Dr Gumbo.
She said Ministry had explained its requirements to development partners such as the United Nations Development Programme, the United Nations Population Fund and the corporate world.
“The two developmental partners funded projects amounting to $211 993 during the first and second quarter of 2015. The UNFPA’s support to gender-based violence programmes amounts to $124 643 while UNDP’s support to various programmes totals $87 350,” said Dr Gumbo.

PASTOR JAILED FOR IMPREGNATING MINOR

A PASTOR at Kingdom Fellowship Church who impregnated a 15-year-old girl after making her believe he was testing her virginity has been sentenced to two years in prison.

Elisha Persuade Nhando (40) admitted to impregnating the minor when he appeared before a Harare magistrate. He claimed they were lovers. Nhando yesterday pleaded guilty to having sexual intercourse with a minor.

Mr Tendai Mahwe sentenced him to three years in prison before setting aside one year on condition of good behaviour. In passing sentence, Mr Mahwe said cases of pastors abusing their duties were rampant hence the need to pass a deterrent sentence.

“Accused person you took advantage of the minor who looked up to you as a father-figure and abused her. Cases of pastors raping or abusing women and children are on the increase hence a clear message needs to be sent out there so as to deter offenders.
“Also you are a married man and your actions show that you only wanted to use the minor. After all, why did you take her from her parent’s house on the guise that as a pastor you wanted to take care of her. This is wickedness,” he said.

In his mitigation, Nhando pleaded for the court’s leniency arguing that he was in love with the minor thinking she was 17-years-old. In Zimbabwe, the age of sexual consent is 16. Pastor Nhando adopted the minor in October last year.

In January this year, the man of cloth proposed love to the minor and she accepted the proposal.
The following day Pastor Nhando took advantage of his wife’s absence and went to the sitting room where the complainant was watching television.

He told the girl he wanted to check if she was still a virgin. Pastor Nhando said the only way to do so was by inserting his manhood into the girl’s privates. He then slept with the minor and warned her not to tell anyone.

The pastor slept with the girl on several occasions thereafter leading to her pregnancy. The girl’s mother reported the matter to the police leading to Nhando’s arrest. The girl is now four months pregnant. herald