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A few questions . . . Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 3rd March 2012 PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 04 March 2012 16:55

Zimbabweans in the UK who heard about the low-key visit by ICT Minister Nelson Chamisa were puzzled to be told by the organisers ‘ask no questions’.

Chamisa had accompanied Tsvangirai and Biti to a conference in Johannesburg to drum up investment in Zimbabwe: ‘Everything’s wonderful or is going to be’ was the message. Perhaps disappointed by the take-up, he came straight on to Birmingham for a fundraising trip. But the vigil was puzzled at the instruction to MDC UK members: ‘No questions for the minister responsible for information and communications’.

MDC members might be prevented from asking questions but here are a few from the Vigil: Does Mr Chamisa think that any investor in his right mind will risk his money in Zimbabwe given the lunatic indigenization proposals? (however ‘wonderful’ the opportunities).

Here’s another question: What did the Prime Minister mean when he told the Wall Street Journal of his discussions with Mugabe: ‘It’s a conversation between two people who have worked three years together for the good of their country?’ (See: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/feb29_2012.html#Z1 – Tsvangirai Says 'Unity' Government to continue).

Mugabe working for the good of his country? ‘Murder, rape and torture’, as our banner reads – good for the country? Poverty, starvation and disease – good for the country? Corruption, looting and lawlessness – good for the country?

In brief, Mugabe – Syrian slaughter supporter – good for Zimbabwe? The Vigil thinks Mr Tsvangirai should seek advice from his information and communications people . . . or perhaps not!

Other points

·         About 30 people turned up at our second Zimbabwe Action Forum. After lively discussion on how we could make a difference, a team of 5 were tasked with bringing a proposal for action to the next meeting.

·         During the Vigil, Zimbabwe We Can held a well-attended meeting chaired by its President Ephraim Tapa. It dispelled malicious propaganda that he had been deposed.

·         Deportation update: unfortunately Thembie was sent back to Swaziland where she is now in hiding.  David Moyo was taken to Heathrow where, according to his mother, he asked to speak to the pilot who refused to take him. Our campaign recommended contacting pilots’ trade unions and it seems this is helping.  David is back in detention.

·         The Vigil stresses that it’s important to get the right legal advice if you are facing deportation and recommends seeking help from the Zimbabwe Association who have a lot of experience and can warn you off some unsatisfactory practitioners who can do grave disservice to their clients.

·         We are glad to promote at the Vigil a wonderful initiative by the Globe Theatre to mark Olympic year by putting on all 37 of Shakespeare’s plays in 37 different languages in a festival running from 21st April to 9th June. They sent us posters for a Shona production of ‘Two Gentlemen of Verona’ taking place on 9th and 10th May. See Events and Notices for details. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a Shona production at the reconstructed Globe Theatre in London for only £5 (see http://globetoglobe.shakespearesglobe.com/plays/the-two-gentlemen-verona/english and http://www.twogentsproductions.com/).

FOR THE RECORD: 50 signed the register.

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·         ROHR North East general meeting. Saturday 10th March from 12 noon – 3 pm. Venue: Gateshead Civic Centre, Regent Street, Gateshead, Tyne and Wear NE8 1HH. 3 mins walk from Gateshead Interchange and Metro station before Police Station. Free parking available. For directions please contact Hazvineyi Choto 07424524910, Susan Ndlovu 07838872435 or Tapiwa Merrymore Semwayo 07722060246.

·         Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 10th March 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.

·         Zimbabwe Action Forum. Saturday 7th April from 6.30 – 9.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. Directions: The Strand is the same road as the Vigil. From the Vigil it’s about a 10 minute walk, in the direction away from Trafalgar Square. The Strand Continental is situated on the south side of the Strand between Somerset House and the turn off onto Waterloo Bridge. The entrance is marked by a big sign high above and a sign for its famous Indian restaurant at street level. It's next to a newsagent.  Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

·         Two Gentlemen of Verona Shona Production at the Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London SE1 9DT. Dates / Times: Wednesday 9 May, 2.30pm. Thursday 10 May, 7.30pm. Tickets £5 - £35 (700 £5 tickets available) from 020 7401 9919 and www.shakespearesglobe.com. A two-man Zimbabwean riot of love, friendship and betrayal. From Verona to Milan, via Harare and Bulawayo, two great friends, Valentine and Proteus, vie for the love of the same woman. In a triumphantly energetic ‘township’ style, Denton Chikura and Tonderai Munyevu slip into all of the play’s fifteen characters – from amorous suitors to sullen daughters, depressed servants and even a dog – in this new, specially commissioned translation.

·         Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2011 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/363-vigil-highlights-2011.  Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2011 Highlights page.

·         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.

·         Vigil Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=8157345519&ref=ts.

·         Vigil Myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/zimbabwevigil.

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