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Zimbabwe Vigil Diary – 6th June 2009 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 07 June 2009 11:57

The Vigil gave a great pom pom to a man who ran 26.2 miles for us.  He is Steve Garvey who ran the London Marathon in 3 hours 26 minutes to raise funds for the Vigil. Steve, a teacher at the Dolphin School in South London, came to the Vigil some months ago with some of his pupils (8 – 9 year olds). Steve invited the Vigil to send someone to speak to his class and Vigil management team member Fungayi Mabhunu took up the challenge. He spoke of the conditions in Zimbabwe and the struggles of school children there. The response was a fundraising effort which is set to raise £1100.  

Apart from the sponsorship of Steve’s run, his Dolphin pupils raised money themselves by such methods as a sponsored maths test! One boy raised £260 on his own. Steve was raised shoulder-high by Vigil supporters when he came to deliver the major part of this generous gift.  He said he was really humbled by how he was received -- to which Vigil Co-ordinator Rose Benton said the Vigil was really humbled by his efforts on our behalf.  It is planned that the money will go to some specific educational project in Zimbabwe with which the children of Dolphin school can feel a personal involvement and perhaps establish penfriends.  

While on the subject of education, our partner organisation, Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe, have held workshops in Midlands and Bulawayo. From these workshops they have identified the need to go into rural areas to educate people on their human rights to empower them to contribute to national healing. As Gweru City father, Willie Muringani, said: “I’m appealing to ROHR that meetings of this nature should be taken out in the rural areas, where there are a lot of people there who need to be opened up”. For more information: www.rohrzimbabwe.org. 

As always there was much discussion at the Vigil about the situation at home and people were disturbed at reports that two Zanu-PF ministers may be included in Morgan Tsvangirai’s entourage when he visits the UK later this month. They are Foreign Minister Simbarashe Mumbengengwi and the Minister of Mines Obert Mpofu, both of whom are subject to travel sanctions because they are key supporters of the Mugabe regime.  The Vigil is puzzled why Tsvangirai should think that bringing these people would encourage the UK to further loosen its purse strings.  The two Mugabe cronies should be worried about the prospect of a citizen’s arrest if they set foot in the UK. We would like to send them to the International Criminal Court in the Hague.   

We would like to give our grateful thanks to the Red Cross who have stepped in to feed the starving prisoners in Zimbabwe.  Many people who pass by the Vigil stop to look at our pictures of starving prisoners and express their horror. 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/ 

FOR THE RECORD:  189 signed the register. 

FOR YOUR DIARY:
·         Service of solidarity with the torture survivors of Zimbabwe.  Friday 26th June from 7 – 8 pm. Venue: Southwark Cathedral. This is the 8th year the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum has marked UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture. For more information, visit: http://www.hrforumzim.com.
·         Zimbabwe Vigil Forum. Saturday 27th June at 6.30 pm. Upstairs at the Theodore Bullfrog, John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.
·         ROHR Leeds general meeting. Saturday 27th June from 1.30 – 5.30 pm. Venue: Dock Green Inn, Leeds LS9 7AB. Contact: Wonder M Mubaiwa 07958758568, Donna Mugoni 07533259373 or B Sikosana 07940181761.
·         Zimbabwe Vigil Forum. Saturday 25th July at 6.30 pm. Upstairs at the Theodore Bullfrog, John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.
·         Zimbabwe Association’s Women’s Weekly Drop-in Centre. Fridays 10.30 am – 4 pm. Venue: The Fire Station Community and ICT Centre, 84 Mayton Street, London N7 6QT, Tel: 020 7607 9764. Nearest underground: Finsbury Park. For more information contact the Zimbabwe Association 020 7549 0355 (open Tuesdays and Thursdays). 

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