Ugly budget – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 28th November 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 29 November 2015 13:35

photolink: https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/23353772356/sizes/m/

 

The ugly situation in Zimbabwe was reflected in the pitiful budget of $4 billion announced by Finance Minister Chinamasa on Thursday. The budget is even smaller than last year’s. To put it in perspective, the money involved is less than half the annual turnover of the South African food retailer Shoprite . . .

 

Mr Chinamasa came up with no serious plans to address the country’s economic malaise. The Vigil thinks this is because Mugabe has no answers except to get on a plane and go to Paris for another grandstanding conference.

 

So the situation in Zimbabwe will surely get worse. When we became independent we were second only to South Africa in the region in terms of economic development. Now Zimbabwe’s budget is smaller than those of all our neighbours, including previously pitied Botswana.

 

Zambia gets five times as much foreign direct investment and Mozambique nine times as much. For its part, Botswana hardly needs any investment because it has worked out how to do it itself.

 

What makes the situation so serious for Zimbabwe is that virtually all the money the government gets goes on paying the government itself  leaving nothing for the country.  That things can be done differently is shown by Tanzania’s new president John Magufuli. His first move was to cancel independence day celebrations to spend the money on a cleanup campaign (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_pres-no-uhuru-party-lets-clean-tanzania/).

 

The Vigil is sad that Zimbabwe is not under the leadership of someone with the vision of President Magufuli whose first thought was to scythe the privileged in the interests of the people as a whole.

 

Indeed, so self-obsessed is Mugabe that he went on from his Paris shopping trip to take part in the Vigil’s Mr Ugly competition (now an international event). See: http://www.news24.com/Africa/Zimbabwe/zims-mr-ugly-must-also-be-creative-and-stylish-organiser-20151126  – Zim's Mr Ugly must also be 'creative and stylish' – organiser.

 

As expected, the event was fiercely competed by various devils but after satisfactory arrangements were put in place with the Vigil’s bankers, ROBERT MUGABE was unanimously declared the winner and awarded the Nikuv floating trophy.

 

Thanks to those who came early to help set up: Eunice Mucherechedzo, Humphrey Dube, Sharon Moyo, Jennifer Maritsa, Farai Sharmaine Gumbanjera and Fungay Mabhunu. Special thanks to Humphrey for climbing up and down the ladder to put up the banners and tarpaulin and to Eunice and Sharon for taking care of the front table. Thanks to those who stayed till the end to help pack up: Alice Shimika, Audrey Chihoho, Catherine Musa, Chipo Parirenyatwa, Eunice Mucherechedzo, Fungayi Mabhunu, Humphrey Dube, Ishmael Makina, Jennifer Maritsa, Jennipher Sabe, Kidi Gotsi, Sharon Moyo, Tawanda       Chikwanha, Veli Mamba and Zondiwe Gumede.

 

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: 21 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest. Saturday 6th December from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark nine months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 13th December from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       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.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF) meets regularly after the Vigil to discuss ways to help those back in Zimbabwe to fight oppression and achieve true democracy.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

 
Zimbabwe’s ‘perfect storm’ – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 21st November 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 22 November 2015 14:51

With Christmas approaching, Zimbabwe seems to be facing all the gifts from hell: economic meltdown, simmering violence, a looming food crisis and a witch on the rampage.

 

The South Africa-based think tank NKC African Economics, which is associated with Oxford University, says Zimbabwe is on the brink of total collapse and the infighting in Zanu PF could trigger unprecedented chaos. In a report titled ‘Renewed violence an inevitable consequence of regime decay’, NKC says Zanu PF is walking dead (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_zimbabwe-on-the-brink-dailynews-live/). NGOs and Western governments have also expressed alarm at the mounting violence (see, for example: Police brutality not the answer – https://www.newsday.co.zw/2015/11/18/police-brutality-not-the-answer/).

 

At the same time, MDC T MP Eddie Cross says Zimbabwe is facing food shortages because of a drought of the same magnitude as experienced in 2008 when the United States stepped in to provide maize. ‘This year we are on our own; aid agencies do not have the budget to help, our government does not have the capacity to step into the breach and the private sector is as broke as everyone else. We better all go to church this Sunday and pray for rain’ (see: http://www.thezimbabwean.co/2015/11/the-implications-of-another-regional-crop-failure/).

 

It is not as if President Mugabe is on hand to take charge of affairs. He is always away in his role as one of the world’s great statesmen – stumbling from one international meeting to another dispensing wisdom. People in Zimbabwe looking for government guidance might suggest that he should charge these foreign freeloaders for his advice.

 

Although ZAnu PF is tearing itself apart, he will have to go to Paris for a climate-change meeting even as the party gathers at Victoria Falls for its conference. Zimbabweans can only be grateful that mother of the nation Dr Grace will be there to hand out adult size 12 plastic shoes to the children (see: http://www.zimeye.com/grace-mugabe-donates-size-13-shoes-to-toddlers/).

 

Another relief would be if the Health Minister Dr David Parirenyatwa is sufficiently embarrassed to pay for the conference from his spoils from the bankrupt Premier Services Medical Aid Society (see: Mugabe must demand Parirenyatwa explanation – http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_mugabe-must-demand-parirenyatwa-explanation/). Incidentally, the Vigil notes that between January and June this year donors provided eight times as much for Zimbabwe’s social services as the government (see: http://www.financialgazette.co.zw/government-at-mercy-of-donors/).

 

Other points

·       On a bitterly cold Saturday – first of the winter –Sister Bev Mutandiro led us in prayer for peace in Zimbabwe in the face of growing signs of violence.

·       The Vigil ended on a vibrant note with rousing singing and drumming. Passers-by joined in the dancing.

·       Thanks to those who came early to help set up: Audry Chamangira, Livert Zhuwao, Beverley and Kennedy Mutandiro, Henrietta Mlambo and Fungayi Mabhunu. Thanks to those who stayed to the end to help pack up: Beverley Mutandiro, Chido Makawa, Dennis Benton, Faith Bhebhe, Fungayi Mabhunu, Ishmael Makina, Jennipher Sabe, Lipi Mhlope, Lovemore Mukeyani, Marjory Kunaka, Rose Benton and Zondiwe Gumede.

·       We have received a reply from the General Medical Council to a complaint we made against the activities of Dr Sylvester Nyatsuro who runs a clinic in Nottingham. Although he is a British citizen he is trying to seize a farm in Zimbabwe owned by a white Zimbabwean. The GMC’s letter thanks us for bringing the matter to their attention.

 

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: 22 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       ROHR Reading Christmas Party Fundraiser. Saturday 28th November from 7:30 – 11 pm. Venue: The Spice Oven Buffet Restaurant, 2 – 4 Church Street, Reading RG4 8AT. Theme: to restore dignity to the suffering people of Zimbabwe. Tickets: £25 per adult, free entry for children under 5 years. For more information, contact: Deborah Harry (07578894896), Charles Mararirakwenda (07964731721), Joshua Kahari (07877246251), Shyline (07827493930)

·       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.

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 28th November from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest. Saturday 6th December from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark nine months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF) meets regularly after the Vigil to discuss ways to help those back in Zimbabwe to fight oppression and achieve true democracy.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

 
Zanu PF‘s Fantasyland – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 14th November 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 16 November 2015 12:51

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/22991478566/sizes/m/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/23004460882/sizes/m/

 

All Zimbabweans will have rejoiced that Zimbabwe is to produce its very own car and export it to the rest of Africa. The announcement in the Herald said the development was in line with the government’s ‘stance of value addition and beneficiation, which is expected to turn the country into a regional giant of exporting finished products’ (see: http://www.herald.co.zw/zim-to-manufacture-own-car-model/).

 

Industry and Commerce Minister Mike Bimha, whom we picketed a few weeks ago when he tried to sell fantasyland to London investors, was proud to tell a news conference in Harare about the project after signing what he said was a ‘memorandum of understanding’ with an Italian firm with the un-Italian name El Badaoui Group.

 

Mr Bimha didn’t quite say that the new car would run on Chinhoyi diesel but the Techzim website immediately cast doubt on the project. ‘We think this shouldn’t be taken seriously at all. It’s the usual effort to offer some news of hope in these pretty damp times’ was its conclusion (see: http://www.techzim.co.zw/2015/11/zim-manufacture-car-model-news-must-not-taken-seriously/)

 

A bracing note of reality also came in an article in the American magazine ‘Foreign Affairs’, which questioned Zimbabwe’s plan to borrow money from the international financial institutions so that it can begin to pay off the interest on its debts so that it can borrow more money which it will of course not repay.  Just the sort of plan that would seem to appeal to the Zanu PF mentality.

 

Well, Foreign Affairs is not buying it, observing:  ‘Now is precisely the wrong time to embrace Mugabe and his coterie, who for 35 years have done little but devastate the country and enrich themselves.’ The magazine goes on to say ‘Significant lending before the regime has taken genuine steps toward much-needed reform would be premature and entirely counterproductive’ (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_analysis-imf-cash-will-entrench-grace-croc/).

 

As with Zimbabwe’s plan to produce its own car, the magazine will not have been taken in by the remarks of Vice President Mnangagwa at a dinner in Harare held to raise money for Zanu PF’s conference at Victoria Falls next month. According to the Herald the dinner was attended by hundreds of captains of industry and heads of parastatals paying up to $100,000 for a table.

 

The must have found it difficult to keep a straight face when the Vice President exhorted them: ‘we must unreservedly shun corruption’, before going on to accuse the media of a warped analysis informed by ‘a litany of denials of reality’ (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_zanu-pf-dinner-oversubscribed-the-herald/).

 

Is this the same reality shown by Mugabe in flying to Turkey to give his advice to the G20 meeting of leaders of the world’s major economies?  Following the terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday French President Hollande has withdrawn from the meeting so Mugabe can take his place (and probably argue the case for supporting the blood-stained Assad regime).

 

Distancing ourselves from Mugabe’s fantasyland, the Vigil expressed our solidarity with France by wearing mourning bands and displaying posters reading ‘Vigil mourns with France’.

 

Other points

·       Thirty people went to Nottingham on Friday to stage another demonstration outside the clinic run by Dr Sylvester Nyatsuro and his wife Veronica who are trying to seize a farm in Zimbabwe although they have lived in the UK for more than ten years.  The supporters of the Vigil and the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe sang and danced and handed out flyers to passers-by. Motorists hooted in support when they passed. Thanks to those who attended: Audry Chamangira, Muchineripi Chigwedere, Paul Chipamhadze, Chamunorwa Chisuko, Flemming Diza, Enniah Dube, Farai Sharmaine Gumbanjera, Princess Homera, Irvine Huni, Danny Kadiki, Chipo Kamhunga, Godwin Kativu, Joana Kwenda, Chido Michelle Makawa, Ishmael Makina, Cephas Maswoswa, Lazarus Matiyenga, Arthur Molife, Nobukhosi Moyo, Nicodimus Muganhu, Ian Mumford, Sally Mutseyami, Virginia Mutyambizi, Mncedisi Ndhlovu, Charles Dumisani Ndlovu, Benhilda Ngwenya, Esther Nyambi, Minienhle Sibanda, Qiniso Sibanda and Sibusisiwe Tshuma. Special thanks to Chamunorwa and Enniah for running the protest and to Cephas who bought food for the group.

·       Thanks to those who arrived early to set up the Vigil: Humphrey Dube, Livert Zhuwao, Barbara Kachidza, Abigail Makope, Mncedisi Ndhlovu and Fungay Mabhunu. Thanks to Livert for looking after the front table. Thanks to the team that put up the tarpaulin and banners in the pouring rain: Humphrey, Mncedisi, Fungayi, Charles Dumisani Ndlovu and Chipo Kamhunga. Special thanks to Humphrey who went tirelessly up and down the ladder to tie everything down. We admired their ingenious engineering in taping a fold up chair and umbrella to the string holding up the tarpaulin to make sure the rain ran off. Thanks to all those who stayed to the end to help pack up: Barbara Kachidza, Charles Dumisani Ndlovu, Chipo Kamhunga, Chipo Parirenyatwa, Christopher Kamuzonde, Dennis Benton, Enniah Dube, Fungayi Mabhunu, Helen Sibanda, Humphrey Dube, Ivy Dangarembizi, Jennipher Sabe, Kidi Gotsi, Linton Magume, Lipi Mhlope, Mncedisi Ndhlovu, Moline Nyabonda, Rose Benton, Tryness Ncube, Xoliso Sithole, Yvonne Makombe and Zondiwe Gumede.

 

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: 35 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 28th November from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest. Saturday 6th December from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark nine months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       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.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF) meets regularly after the Vigil to discuss ways to help those back in Zimbabwe to fight oppression and achieve true democracy.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

 
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