Bums to the wind – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 30th March 2019 PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 31 March 2019 13:25

The Zimbabwean economist Tony Hawkins has urged President Mnangagwa to hold talks with the MDC leader Nelson Chamisa on the way forward for the country 

Hawkins said: ‘Ultimately the solution to Zimbabwe’s problems is political.  You can fiddle around with the economy as much as you like but you are not going to get a lasting solution without some form of political and social consensus.’

Mnangagwa has so far rejected bilateral discussion with Chamisa, insisting that the MDC should join in the joint talks he is having with other opposition parties. But Professor Hawkins, speaking at a meeting of the Institute of Directors, said there was no point in the MDC being grouped with people who got less than 0.5% of the vote last year whereas the MDC, he said, took something like 44%.

Hawkins said an agreement between Zanu PF and MDC had become inevitable because of the deteriorating economic situation and predicted an economic collapse if Mnangagwa government failed to build national consensus.

‘We have a very serious issue. We have an extremely fractured and polarised society. We have a rural electorate which supports government and we have younger and urban voters demanding change. How this plays out no one can tell. All we can say is I think the social and political climate will probably worsen as unemployment rises and it will, as poverty increases and it will.’ (See: https://www.thezimbabwemail.com/economic-analysis/solution-to-zimbabwes-problems-is-political/.)

Everyone at the Vigil, even if their families at home are not in danger, has been anxiously following news of the cyclone disaster, which has been given wide coverage here. We have been inspired by those who have rushed to help the victims and the generosity of so many others. 

Some Zimbabweans who are now living in Mozambique have kept in touch with the Vigil over the years and we have been worried about their horse sanctuary in Vilanculos near Beira. They report: ‘Thankfully for us and the horses we were totally unaffected but Pat had survived the cyclone in 2007 and during the 250 knot winds he had to untether the horses and let them go. Interestingly enough they made their own plan they moved to higher ground and formed a V formation with their bums and withstood the wind.’ Their website is http://www.mozambiquehorsesafari.com/.

Other points

FOR THE RECORD: 25 signed the register.

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

  • ROHR general members’ meeting. Saturday 13th April from 11 am. Venue: Royal Festival Hall. Contact: Ephraim Tapa 07940793090, Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • ROHR fundraising dinner. Saturday 27th April from 6 – 11.30 pm. Venue Zazas, 108 Whitechapel Road, London E1 1JE. Contact: Sipho Hobane 07400566013, Esther Munyira 07492058109, Fungisai Mupandira 07468504393, Casper Nyamakura 0757766912, Margaret Munenge 0739211743, Bianca Mpawaenda 07400566013 and Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • MDC London Branch meeting. Saturday 6th April from 12 noon – 2 pm. Venue: Royal Festival Hall. Contact: Netsai Makarichi 07592619201 and Flemming Diza 07960838847.
  • The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil for £10. All proceeds go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe's work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
  • Facebook pages:
 
Sofa not so good – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 23rd March 2019 PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 25 March 2019 20:03

The cyclone that devastated eastern Zimbabwe was predictable. What was also predictable was the failure of the government to prepare for it. Everyone knew it was coming but nothing was done about it and it was not until it arrived that President Mnangagwa cut short yet another foreign trip for a brief visit home.

To make matters worse, the disaster victims in Chimanimani – one of the worst hit areas – desperate for aid, had to make do at first with Mnangagwa’s sofa. It gave them little comfort to see presidential guards unloading furniture from a helicopter instead of emergency supplies.

Of course, it is only right that the President – no doubt exhausted by his tireless travels – should have the comfort of his sofa when he consoled the bereaved and assured them that everything possible was being done for them. The question is, by whom? Aid distribution is said to have been put on hold until the President arrived and could hand it out – prompting fears that it is being politicized as usual.

The entire budget allocation for this year for the Civil Protection Unit amounted to a meagre $3 million. it could have got more had it not been for government profligacy in hiring expensive planes to take Mnangagwa on his manic travels – 28 trips abroad in the 15 months since he came to power. After announcing two days of mourning, he immediately departed for Angola to mark the anniversary of the Southern African Liberation Day – which most regional heads of state didn’t bother to attend.

Whatever the failures of the government, there can be no doubting the open-hearted response of the people of Zimbabwe to the disaster. People abroad have also responded generously. The British Ambassador Ms Melanie Robinson told the President that the UK had already committed $23 million to assist victims of cyclone Idai. ‘Here in Zimbabwe we have prepositioned equipment in Mutare so we have been able to respond very quickly and that is health equipment, medical supplies and some hygiene equipment and making sure that it gets to the people who really need it.’ Pity the Zimbabwean government didn’t do the same.

Other points.

  • Central London was packed with people attending a rally in Parliament Square demanding a new referendum on whether the UK should leave the European Union.
  • The Vigil mourns the loss of our good friend Arnold Magwanyata. He was a faithful supporter of the Vigil and ROHR. We made a collection for his family.  A gofundme page has been opened for those who wish to donate to Arnold’s repatriation, check: https://www.gofundme.com/help-repatriate-arnold-magwanyata-to-zimbabwe&rcid=r01-155346313999-af1335f3a2034edb&pc=wa_co_campmgmt_m.
  • Thanks to those who came early to help set up the front table and put up the banners: Patrick Hale, Jonathan Kariwo, Thomas Mahasoh, Patricia Masamba, Bianca Mpawaenda, Agnes Mukumba, Margaret Munenge, Richard Munyama, Tapiwa Muskwe and Casper Nyamakura. Thanks to Patricia, Margaret, Agnes and Lucia Mungwari for looking after the front table, to Bianca, Agnes, Bigboy Sibanda, Tinotenda Chihope and Netsayi Makarichi for handing out flyers and to Jonathan, Casper and Heather Makawa for photos.
  • For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

FOR THE RECORD: 23 signed the register.

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

  • ROHR general members’ meeting. Saturday 13th April from 11 am. Venue: Royal Festival Hall. Contact: Ephraim Tapa 07940793090, Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • ROHR fundraising dinner. Saturday 27th April from 6 – 11.30 pm. Venue Zazas, 108 Whitechapel Road, London E1 1JE. Contact: Sipho Hobane 07400566013, Esther Munyira 07492058109, Fungisai Mupandira 07468504393, Casper Nyamakura 0757766912, Margaret Munenge 0739211743, Bianca Mpawaenda 07400566013 and Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • MDC London Branch meeting. Saturday 6th April from 12 noon – 2 pm. Venue: Royal Festival Hall. Contact: Netsai Makarichi 07592619201 and Flemming Diza 07960838847.
  • The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil for £10. All proceeds go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe's work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
  • Facebook pages:
 
Difficult democracy – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 16th March 2019 PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 17 March 2019 12:12

Zimbabweans in the UK have enthusiastically engaged in the Brexit debate on whether the country should pull out of the European Union. Many have passionately taken sides – most, it appears, keen to stay in the Union.

Since the dangerously narrow victory of the Brexiteers in the referendum three years ago, there has been fierce debate on what would be best way for the nation to leave, not surprising since most members of parliament disagreed with the electorate.

But despite the differences there has been remarkably little violence – in contrast to the situation in neighbouring France, which has seen months of riots against the policies of President Macron, or the clashes in Germany involving the emergent right wing party opposed to Muslim immigration.

Despite the irritation and regret of the other 27 members of the EU at the UK’s difficulty in reaching agreement on the type of post-Brexit relations it wants with them, there has been an unexpected side effect: fascination with the Britain’s parliamentary system.

Television audiences in Germany, particularly, have been transfixed by scenes from the House of Commons, where 650 members of parliament have crowded in for boisterous, close-quarters debate. This audience has found it to be high drama, not just something to be exasperated by. It is democracy in action, not some dry, token, neat, pre-determined affair characteristic of hygienic European legislatures.

We Zimbabwean exiles in the UK still don’t know how this drama will end. But following President Ramaphosa’s visit to Zimbabwe we are profoundly depressed about how Zimbabwe’s situation will turn out. Ramaphosa’s refusal to even meet MDC president Chamisa seems to rule out hope of his playing a role in bringing about a dialogue between the rival parties in Zimbabwe. Not much democratic debate there – more the usual Afro-elite self-interest..

The Brexit debate has embraced all voices and tried to reach a consensus. This used to be known in Africa as Ubuntu. In the UK it has indeed taken time – but not nearly as long as Zimbabwe’s failure to fully implement the 2013 constitution . . . And unlike in Zimbabwe, the UK has an economy which is buoyant, with employment at a record high, while Zimbabweans face the total collapse of the vestigial health service, where gynaecological oncologist Bothwell Guzha of Parirenyatwa Hospital said ‘I am just seeing patients, make a diagnosis and send them away to die.’ See: https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-zimbabwe-doctors/zimbabwe-doctors-say-patients-dying-due-to-drug-equipment-shortages-idUKKCN1QU2HT and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPsHSV1Wpe0.

Other points

FOR THE RECORD: 16 signed the register.

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

  • ROHR Reading Branch outreach and general meeting. Saturday 23rd March. Community outreach from 11.30 am – 1.30 pm. Venue: Broad street, Reading. Awareness campaign on deteriorating human rights in Zimbabwe. General meeting from 2 – 5 pm. Venue: The RISC, 35-39 London Street, Reading RG1 4PS. Contact: Sihle (Vice Chair) 07985712749, Josephine (Vice Organising Secretary) 07455166668, Shylette (Vice Secretary) 0782892980.
  • ROHR general members’ meeting. Saturday 13th April from 11 am. Venue: Royal Festival Hall. Contact: Ephraim Tapa 07940793090, Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • ROHR fundraising dinner. Saturday 27th April from 6 – 11.30 pm. Venue Zazas, 108 Whitechapel Road, London E1 1JE. Contact: Sipho Hobane 07400566013, Esther Munyira 07492058109, Fungisai Mupandira 07468504393, Casper Nyamakura 0757766912, Margaret Munenge 0739211743, Bianca Mpawaenda 07400566013 and Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • MDC Reading Branch restructuring meeting. Saturday 23rd March from 12 noon – 4 pm. Venue: RISC, 35-39 London Street, Reading RG1 4PS. Contacts: Charles Mararirakwenda 07588275745, Josephine Jombe 07455166668, Deborah Harry 07478894896.
  • MDC London Branch meeting. Saturday 6th April from 12 noon – 2 pm. Venue: Royal Festival Hall. Contact: Netsai Makarichi 07592619201 and Flemming Diza 07960838847.
  • The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil for £10. All proceeds go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe's work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
  • Facebook pages:

The Vigil, outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London, takes place every Saturday from 14.00 to 17.00 to protest against gross violations of human rights in Zimbabwe. The Vigil which started in October 2002 will continue until internationally-monitored, free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe. http://www.zimvigil.co.uk.

 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next > End >>

JPAGE_CURRENT_OF_TOTAL

Post Election Violence 08

  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
  • Post Election Violence 08
Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights of 2010
Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights of 2009
Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights of 2008
Powered by 100% Green Energy