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Bind Mugabe to GPA promises – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 23rd February 2013 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 24 February 2013 16:30

On a bitterly cold Saturday, with the temperature not rising above 2 degrees centigrade, we were surprised to be joined outside the Embassy by President Mugabe, tearing himself away from his 89th birthday celebrations.

 

As befits a man of such advanced years, he took a rest on one of our camp chairs while he contemplated the prospect of another term of office. Where to holiday next? The UN in New York perhaps? Or there must be an AU meeting in Addis Ababa? Or Rome to meet the new Pope? Or even Brussels – so keen to drop sanctions! No, better a quiet visit to Hong Kong to count the money. (PS remember to avoid South Korea as Tsvangirai is already there busy preparing for the elections . . .)

 

As Mugabe dozed off under the snowflakes, Vigil supporters tied him to his chair with the SADC bonds which we hope will produce free and fair elections: ‘International Observers’, ‘Curbs on Partisan Security Forces’, ‘Impartial Electoral Commission’, ‘Reformed Voters’ Roll’, ‘No Hate Speech’ and ‘Open Airways’ (perhaps we can even have our radios back . . . )

 

With Mugabe’s ability to steal the elections curbed by these restrictions, Vigil supporters trooped off to the South African High Commission to deliver a letter for President Zuma warning him that unless the GPA reforms are implemented there is no hope that Mugabe will allow free and fair elections (for full text of the letter see last week’s diary: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/475-zuma-save-zimbabwe--zimbabwe-vigil-diary-16th-february-2013).

 

Thanks to Fungayi Mabhunu for playing the role of Mugabe in our demonstration which was part of the Free Zimbabwe Global Campaign which has been staging monthly demonstrations since January last year.

 

Other points

·         We were glad to be joined by MDC stalwart Makusha Mugabe (no relation!) who runs the ChangeZimbabwe website, especially as our numbers were depleted by the attendance at the launch of a new ROHR branch in Southampton.

·         We are missing Josie Zhuga who is such a buoyant personality on the front desk.  She is not well and is awaiting surgery.

·         It was good to meet Andrew Veremu who came down from Coventry University to speak to us about a documentary he is doing on Zimbabwean asylum seekers for his master’s degree. We are only too happy to help the many students who come to us seeking help with projects on Zimbabwe and asylum.

 

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: 40 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·         ROHR Central London Branch meeting. Saturday 2nd March from 12 noon to 1.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see entry below. Contact: Fungayi Mabhunu 07746 552 597, Cynthia Mutede 07548 609 683.

·         Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 2nd March from 6.30 – 9.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. The meeting will take place straight after the Vigil. 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. Next ZAF, Saturday 16th March same time and venue.

·         Mike Campbell Foundation: Hope in a Desert. Thursday 7th March at 7 pm. Venue: Royal Geographical Society, 1 Kensington Gore, London SW7 2AR. Speakers are Ben Freeth, Dr Craig Richardson and Gillian Higgins. The event will be chaired by Kate Hoey MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Zimbabwe. Tickets: £15. Check: http://www.mikecampbellfoundation.com/images/rgs2013flyer.pdf for more information.

·         Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2012 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/467-vigil-highlights-2012.  Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2012 Highlights page.

·         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 the views and opinions of ROHR.

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

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

·         Useful websites: www.zanupfcrime.com which reports on Zanu PF abuses and www.ipaidabribe.org.zw where people can report corruption in Zimbabwe.

 

How can you help?

The Zimbabwe Vigil exists entirely on donations from the public and well wishers. You can help us by donating via a deposit into our account Thank you.