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Zimbabwe Vigil Diary – 13th March 2010 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 14 March 2010 18:41

Following our appeal to President Zuma to arrange early elections in Zimbabwe, the Vigil is to launch a petition to the UN Security Council calling on it to ensure that the elections are not stolen again.   

The petition reads: ‘We call on the Security Council to ensure that the next elections in Zimbabwe are free and fair. We look to the United Nations to supervise the electoral process and the handover of power to a new government and believe peace-keeping troops will need to be in place before, during and after the polling.’ 

As we explained to President Zuma, Vigil supporters believe that the situation in Zimbabwe can only worsen the longer elections are delayed. Our argument is that:
1.       After a year of the interim unitary government it is clear that it is making no progress.  If anything it is going backwards. The Mugabe regime has shown that it is determined to cling to power and that it will block real change, such as a free media and independent judiciary, so new elections are the only way forward.
2.       The situation will steadily deteriorate as long as Mugabe and his gang remain in power. Finance Minister Tendai Biti has admitted his hoped-for foreign budgetary aid and external investment will not be realised and, on top of that, the national exchequer has seen zero benefit from the exploitation of the Chiadzwa diamond fields. 
3.       The Vigil rejects the argument that lifting or suspending targeted sanctions will make the Mugabe regime more conciliatory. On the contrary, we are convinced that appeasing the regime will only encourage it in its intransigence. We believe that the Mugabe gang fears that any change will lead to their prosecution for human rights and other abuses and that it is up to South Africa – as their supporter over the years – to make arrangements for the future of these criminals.
4.       In particular, Vigil supporters reject the notion that sanctions should be lifted because they are misrepresented by the Mugabe regime as sanctions against Zimbabweans in general. We believe the proper answer to Mugabe’s propaganda is to patiently convey the truth to Zimbabweans and deluded Mugabe sympathizers in Africa and elsewhere. The Allies in the Second World War did not defeat national socialism, Italian fascism and Japanese militarism by bowing to their odious propaganda.  

Some other points:
·           We were glad to be joined again after a long absence by Ben Buckland nam Cameron in full Scottish regalia, kilt and all, who played the bagpipes to accompany the national anthem.  Ben has a family connection with Zimbabwe.
·           City and Islington College in London has been very complimentary about a talk given by the Vigil’s Josie Zhuga to mark international women’s day. They said she gave ‘an informative and personal talk about life and human rights for women in Zimbabwe’. Check: http://www.candi.ac.uk/about_us/news/2009-10/mar_4_-_candi_celebrates.aspx
·           Vigil supporters were cynical about a video shown on the television in the Embassy window pontificating hypocritically about saving lions. We felt it was a pity they did not do more to save the lives of Zimbabweans – and end the rampant poaching which is wiping out wildlife.                                                                                          

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. For the latest ZimVigil TV programme check the link at the top of the home page of our website.  For earlier ZimVigil TV programmes check:  http://www.zbnnews.com/home/firingline  

FOR THE RECORD: 191signed the register. 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:
·           ROHR Oxford Launch meeting. Saturday 20th March from 2 to 6 pm. Venue: Newroad Baptist Church, Bonn Square, Oxford OX1 1LQ. ROHR Founder members and ROHR UK Executive present. Contact: Wisher Mandava 07552813803, Lucia Takawira 07760315739, Lindiwe Maposa 07837788807, C Gomani 07960103752 or P Mapfumo 07915926323 / 07932216070.
·           ROHR Liverpool Demonstration. Saturday 20th March from 2 – 5 pm. Venue: Church Street (Outside Primark) Liverpool City Centre. Contact: Desire Chimuka 07917733711, Anywhere Mungoyo 07939913688, Trywell Migeri 07956083758. Future demonstrations all on Saturdays: 3rd and 17th April, 8th and 22nd May. Same venue and time. 
·           ROHR Thurrock & Basildon launch meeting, Saturday 27th March from 1.30 – 6 pm. Venue: Grays Parish Hall, West Street, Grays RM17 6LL. Contact: Tobokwa Malikongwa 07533660621, Billy Machekano 07765459538,  Paradzai Mapfumo 07932216070 / 07915926323
·           Southwark Cathedral’s hymn singing in solidarity with worshippers in Harare. Sunday 4th April (Easter Day). Time tba. Venue: outside the Zimbabwe Embassy.  They are singing in solidarity with worshippers who are going to be locked out of the Anglican Cathedral in Harare on Easter Day. 
·          
Swaziland Vigil. Saturdays from 10 am – 1 pm. Venue: Swazi High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London
SW1E 6LB.  Please support our Swazi friends. Nearest stations: St James’s Park and Victoria. For more information check: www.swazilandvigil.co.uk.
·           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).
·           Strategic Internship for Zimbabweans organised by Citizens for Sanctuary which is trying to secure work placements for qualified Zimbabweans with refugee status or asylum seekers. For information: http://www.citizensforsanctuary.org.uk/pages/Strategic.html or contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
·           For Motherland ENT’s videos of the Vigil on 30/01/2010: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oeI4veVo0H0 and the Vigil on 26/12/2009: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdPsBsief0s and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nX6sv2T9gwk&feature=related.                                                                                          

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