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EU undermines hope of democratic change – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 5th November 2011 PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 06 November 2011 16:50

 The Vigil is appalled that the EU has cleared the way for Zanu PF to expand massively its diamond swindle. We believe the EU’s craven capitulation to commercial interests will undermine fatally any attempts to get Zanu PF to honour the GPA. 

With virtually unlimited funds at Zanu PF’s disposal, Vigil supporters believe it is farewell to hopes of free and fair elections (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/nov3_2011.html#Z2 – Approval of Zimbabwe gem sales will fund Mugabe, politician warns and http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/nov3_2011.html#Z5 – Process Lets Zimbabwe Off The Hook, Again). We are not surprised that people are now talking of violent resistance.  

The EU’s foreign affairs chief, the British mediocrity Baroness Ashton, lauding the Kimberley Process agreement, spoke of monitoring and transparency. What delusion!  (http://eu-ashtonstatement.notlong.com/Statement by EU High Representative, Catherine Ashton, on the agreement reached in Kimberley Process regarding Marange diamonds). 

The less deluded Zimbabwe Mines Minister Obert Mpofu jubilantly declared that Zimbabwe would ‘unleash her worthiness’ on the unsuspecting world. He elaborated on this: Zimbabwe will uphold KP standards ‘in a way that has never been seen before’. Quite! (see: http://voa-mpofu-diamonds-statement.notlong.com/Kimberley Process Clears Zimbabwe Diamonds for Export; US Chairmanship Mooted). 

Mr Mpofu’s protestations somehow minded us of the man from Zvishavane who took a young lady home from the bar only to find she had turned into a donkey by the next morning. (Zimbabwean man claims prostitute turned to donkey – http://telegraph-zim-man-donkey.notlong.com/).

 ‘I find I am now in love with the donkey’ he told a court – echoing the breathless new British Ambassador Deborah Bronnert the morning after a 90 minute assignation with Mugabe (see: UK envoy speaks on Mugabe charm, Tsvangirai intelligence – http://zim-mail-ukenvoy-mugabe.notlong.com/). ‘Such a courteous gentleman. Friendly and engaging.’ Ms Bronnert could hardly restrain herself from gushing ‘we must drop these illegal sanctions preventing Gushongo from investing his hard-earned $3 billion in Switzerland (Mugabe Family planned to open Bank Accounts in Switzerland – http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/nov1_2011.html#Z12).  

The Vigil believes that Ms Bronnert could have delivered a more pertinent message: UK taxpayers – that includes us at the Vigil – have given you $130 million this year to make up for the billion dollars plus that you have been stealing from Marange and we insist that you honour your obligations under the GPA. 

If Ms Bronnert’s new romance is difficult to take on board, how about the Zimbabwe Reserve Bank Governor talking about his true love – chickens. Not just ordinary chickens but Lunar chickens! It turns out from an interview with Business Digest that Gono is not only a Lunartic visionary but has some real qualifications – in ‘chickenomics’ (see: RBZ Governor speaks on business empire – http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/nov4a_2011.html#Z8).

Other points
·         The Vigil is happy to report that our supporter Shamiso Kofi has been released from detention after the government’s failure to deport her. Another case to which we drew attention involved ROHR activist Lovemore Muzadzi. An attempt to deport him on Monday resulted in the pilot refusing to fly and Lovemore was taken off the plane.
·         The Vigil has received a reply to our open letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury about his visit to Zimbabwe (see: http://zimvigil-lambeth-palace.notlong.com/ for full text of both letters). The Archbishop expresses his ‘deep and sincere gratitude’ for our support. The reply says the Archbishop thanks the Vigil for its ‘continuing dedication’ and that he is following assiduously the situation in Zimbabwe.
·         We were joined by about 100 uniformed members of the Chinese spiritual organisation, the Falun Gong, whose demonstrations against communist oppression we have supported. The group included a large musical ensemble drawn from several countries. We discussed with them our disquiet at Chinese involvement in the Marange diamond racket and other matters such as arms sales to Mugabe.
·         Vigil management team member Luka Phiri has been invited to be a keynote speaker at the STAR (Student Action for Refugees) Conference: Freedom from Torture, 111 Isledon Road, London N7 7JW on Saturday 19th November.
·         Thanks to Marbel Matewa who worked hard selling the Zimbabwean newspaper. 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website – they cannot be downloaded from the slideshow on the front page of the Zimvigil website. 

FOR THE RECORD: 73 signed the register.  

EVENTS AND NOTICES:
·         The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organisation based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation 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 the views and opinions of ROHR.
·         ZBN News. The Vigil management team wishes to make it clear that the Zimbabwe Vigil is not responsible for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Network News (ZBN News). We are happy that they attend our activities and provide television coverage but we have no control over them. All enquiries about ZBN News should be addressed to ZBN News.
·         The Zim Vigil band (Farai Marema and Dumi Tutani) has launched its theme song ‘Vigil Yedu (our Vigil)’ to raise awareness through music. To download this single, visit: www.imusicafrica.com and to watch the video check: http://ourvigil.notlong.com. To watch other Zim Vigil band protest songs, check: http://Shungurudza.notlong.com and http://blooddiamonds.notlong.com.
·         ROHR Manchester Meetings. Saturday 12th November (committee meeting from 11 am – 1 pm, general meeting from 2 – 5 pm). Venue: The Salvation Army Citadel, 71 Grosvenor Road, Manchester M13 9UB.  Contact; Delina Tafadzwa Mutyambizi 07775313637, Chamunorwa Chihota 07799446404, Panyika Karimanzira 07551062161, Artwell Pfende 07886839353. Future meetings:  10th December. Same times / venue.
·         ROHR Manchester Vigil. Saturday 26th November from 2 – 5 pm. Venue: Cathedral Gardens, Manchester City Centre (subject to change to Piccadilly Gardens). Contact; Delina Tafadzwa Mutyambizi 07775313637, Chamunorwa Chihota 07799446404, Panyika Karimanzira 07551062161, Artwell Pfende 07886839353. Future demonstration: 31st December. Same time and venue.
·         Vigil Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=8157345519&ref=ts.
·         Vigil Myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/zimbabwevigil.
·         ‘Through the Darkness’, Judith Todd’s acclaimed account of the rise of Mugabe.  To receive a copy by post in the UK please email confirmation of your order and postal address to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and send a cheque for £10 payable to “Budiriro Trust” to Emily Chadburn, 15 Burners Close, Burgess Hill, West Sussex RH15 0QA. All proceeds go to the Budiriro Trust which provides bursaries to needy A Level students in Zimbabwe.

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