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South Africa stop Xenophobia PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 19 April 2015 13:56

Poem by Esther Nyambi

 

South Africans let us remind you that during apartheid

All your neighbouring countries welcomed you with open arms

Harboured you, fed you, educated you, gave you jobs and comfort

We helped you defeat apartheid

 

When you attained your independence

We flooded in to South Africa to help our brothers in need

The post apartheid era left a vacuum that needed to be filled

So brothers came from Malawi, Zimbabwe, Somalia and Mozambique

With strong arms we helped you to lift and sustain your economy

 

We brought our skills and started businesses

To give you time to learn and grow

We hoped you would learn and emulate

So you may learn and go

Instead you thank us with hatred and violence

 

Is this what Tata Mandela taught us?

He taught us forgiveness and reconciliation

Is this what Thabo Mbeki taught use?

He taught us about African renaissance

Bishop Tutu too taught us truth and reconciliation

 

As we stand here today, we say we forgive you South Africa

For burning our shops and killing our children

We forgive you

For looting and maiming

We forgive you

 

We implore you today South Africa

Stop the attach on fellow brothers South Africa

Stop this xenophobia South Africa

Stop this Afrophobia South Africa

 
Text of letter to the Westminster Police PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Saturday, 11 April 2015 20:07

We wish to inform you that the Zimbabwe Vigil wishes to stage a demonstration from 10.30 am – 2 pm on Friday 17th April 2015 at our usual gathering place outside the Zimbabwe Embassy.

 

The Vigil and other Zimbabwean exile groups have over the past month been seeking information from the Embassy about the abduction of our friend the human rights activist Itai Dzamara who was last seen being bundled into a car with obscured number plates in Harare on 9th March. Mr Dzamara had been exercising his constitutional rights and leading a protest in Africa Unity Square in Harare since last October calling on President Mugabe to resign because of the catastrophic failure of his 35-year-long regime to serve the interests of the people.

 

It is believed he was taken by agents of the brutal Central Intelligence Organisation which has a history of extra-legal activities against Mugabe’s opponents. They are known to routinely torture people, some of whom are never heard of again. Some bodies may later be found in the bush while others are thought to have been disposed of in acid baths.

 

Lawyers for Human Rights in Zimbabwe have offered a reward for information about Mr Dzamara’s disappearance and say they are taking the Mugabe regime to court over its failure to observe a court order to search for him.

 

The European Union, along with the United States, Canada, Australia and others, has expressed concern at the disappearance of Itai Dzamara, with whom the Vigil was in regular contact before his abduction.

 

As you know, the Vigil has been bearing weekly witness outside the Embassy to the evils of the Zimbabwe regime since 12th October 2002. We long to return to a peaceful and prosperous Zimbabwe and are distressed that the world has stood aside while the situation has steadily deteriorated. In brief:

  • All elections are rigged

  • The regime flouts the law with impunity

  • The economy has been destroyed by corruption

 

There is indisputable evidence of Mugabe’s genocidal history (Gukurahundi), the enforced displacement of hundreds of thousands of people (Murambatsvina) and his tribal and racial ethnic cleansing (farm grabbing among others).

 

These have led to a forced exodus of Zimbabweans who are now scattered around the world, which continues to turn a blind eye to this evil regime which, the Vigil believes, is helped to stay in power by British aid.

 

We are planning to send a small delegation into the Embassy to present the Ambassador with a letter. If the Embassy is closed we will push the letter under their front door. 

 
BRING BACK ITAI DZAMARA FUND APPEAL PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 22 March 2015 12:54

Itai Dzamara, a respected journalist and pro-democracy activist, founder and leader of Occupy Africa Unity Square Movement, was abducted on 9th March 2015 in Harare. The movement had its origins on 17th October 2014 when Dzamara submitted a petition to Robert Mugabe over the "failure of your government to properly and effectively manage the country". He was seen being bundled into an unmarked car by five unidentified people. His whereabouts are still unknown.

 

“Itai was the breadwinner and his wife Sheffra has to survive through help from family members. The couple have two children, a boy of 7 and a girl of 3, and the kids are traumatised,” Patson Dzamara, Itai’s brother said.

 

Please make a donation to assist Itai’s family. Your donation could help in buying food for the children and paying for legal fees.  After his abduction, his wife approached the High Court in Harare to force the police and the Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) to search for her husband.

 

All donations should be directed to Patson Dzamara, Itai Dzamara’s brother, via money sending services such as Western Union, World Remit or Moneygram or contact Patson Dzamara: 00263772889217, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 

If you use money sending services please send the receipt ONLY, showing what is required for the recipient to collect the money in Zimbabwe such as MTCN number, test question and answer etc and the amount donated to Tendai Kwari: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . He will forward the information to the recipient

 

Please share or forward this appeal to your family and friends to help spread the message.

 

At the Zimbabwe Vigil on Saturday 14/03/2014, £67.52 was collected and has been sent to Itai’s family.

  

Thank you for taking your time to read this appeal.

 

Yours sincerely

Tendai Kwari

OCCUPY AFRICA UNITY SQUARE – UK Chapter.

Twitter #BringBack ItaiDzamaraSupportFund.

 
Unhappy Birthday dear Mugabe PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 22 March 2015 12:49

Unhappy Birthday dear Mugabe / Mugabe's 91st Birthday results in furious protests in London 

By David Wilkins

 

Zimbabwe House London, Zimbabwe's official embassy is the scene of many demonstrations against Mugabe's continuing rule of the country.  But Saturday 21st February (Mugabe's 91st birthday) saw one of the largest demonstrations calling for this to be his last birthday in office.  

 

Organized by the Zimbabwe Vigil, which has held weekly demonstrations against Mugabe for over a decade, the Zimbabwean diaspora was out in force on this occasion.  A huge banner depicted all organisations present, from the well-known MDC, to expat communities as far apart as South Africa, Australia and the USA. 

 

"We are gathered not to wish Mugabe a happy birthday, but to remind him that it is time to go," explains Wilbert Mukori.  "The situation is totally unsustainable and if he doesn't go now, the country will be forced into a situation where it changes like other dictatorships, like Libya and Egypt."    Wilbert also argues for a change in the system of Zimbabwe as well as for Mugabe to go.  "2008 was Zimbabwe's best opportunity for change, but it didn't happen because the MDC failed to secure reforms. We can't blame Mugabe for that, he just took advantage of that."  Indeed Mr Mukori's dissatisfaction with the MDC has prompted him to set up his own party, The Zimbabwe Social Democrats. 

 

The demonstration attracted the attention all over the continent including activists for democracy in Swaziland and the Occupy Africa Unity Square movement who pledged "Total warfare against Zimbabwe," at the microphone.   One of Africa's oldest liberation movements, ZAPU, was also in attendance.  Although often described as destroyed by Mugabe's Fifth brigade in the 1980s, its  European Chairman is proud to say they  still oppose the Zanu government. 

 

"Mugabe tore our party apart," says Christopher Maphosa, "Joshua Nkomo formed a pact with Zanu in 1987 and he clearly failed but in 2008 we broke away and  we are in opposition again, Zapu is there, it is present in Zimbabwe."  He is also of the opinion that they owe Mugabe nothing.  "Mugabe did not defeat Rhodesia," he says hotly when this was put to him.  "Zimbabweans participated in the liberation of the country, it was never a one man show and now our country is in a state of decay. He has destroyed the country" 

 

In typical African style, the Zimbabwe demonstration contains traditional drumming singing and ululating, together with a constant chant, "Mugabe must go."  Feelings are running high at a satirical sketch involving a protester in a Mugabe mask who trips over a red carpet.  This slip, claims Fungayi Mabhunu aka Robert Mugabe, was because former vice president Joyce Mujuru was hiding underneath it. "This is a very underfoot move," he claims as fellow vigil supporters pull him up, "and that is why we threw her out."  Ephraim Tapa, head of ROHR Zimbabwe, (the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe) argues that Mugabe is becoming an international joke.

 

"He should be restricted to telling fairy stories to children," he says emphatically.  "At his last party conference he finished his speech by saying "Down with Zanu-PF, and that it must be destroyed."  He was supposed to back his own party and he said down with it! Even his own party are anxious when he opens his mouth. 

 

Makusha Mugabe of the MDC "a real Mugabe not the fake Robert Mugabe," despairs of 2015 Zimbabwe. "The situation is dire now," he says, "and our party is back in the trenches again, we are going to fight until there are free and fair elections."  He argues that unlike 2008 where the economy was in free fall, the whole system has broken down. "There is no electricity now," Makusha says sadly, "and there is no water because the waterworks in Harare were meant to be upgraded but that's not happened.  People can't even find sprays to protect their livestock."  But Makusha also insist that the MDC is the only credible opposition party, despite the recent split between Morgan Tsvangirai  and Tendai Biti.  Kelvin Kamupira agrees the opposition is disunited but insists it is the only possible party who can challenge Mugabe.  

 

"There's been too much infighting over the years, and that's weakened the MDC in its ability to get Mugabe out of power," Kelvin admits.  "But we're the only genuine opposition party. I respect Mukori, he has a great personality, but I think his party's still too young to lead the government in Zimbabwe."  Kelvin supports the Tsvangirai faction, but while they re united here today, a Biti supporter told me that Morgan Tsvangirai should step down. "If your party leader lost an election he should step down," he says.  "These people are my brothers and sisters and I love them, but I keep telling them that Tsvangirai must go." 

 

Despite the disagreements on who should lead the opposition in Zimbabwe, Mugabe's birthday has united scores of expats in calling for his departure.  This is shown after the demonstration.  The demonstrators join hands for a solemn but rousing chorus of the well known African National anthem God Bless Africa: Ishe Komborerra Africa in Shona. 

 

And Ephraim Tapa is convinced the expats are Zimbabwe's best hope. "Mugabe has control of everything in Zimbabwe," he explains.  "There is too much fear there, and in 2018 it may not surprise you that Mugabe is still in power.  All other south African liberation struggles were won by people outside Zimbabwe." And the general mood was also summed up by Mr Tapa, when I asked what his birthday message to Mugabe would be. "I would say," he says seriously.  "Mugabe, for the sake of Zimbabwe, for Zimbabweans, please go!" 

 
Voice of Democracy’s message to the Zimbabwe Election Commission PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Saturday, 14 March 2015 21:47

The Voice for Democracy warmly welcomes Vice President Mnangagwa’s announcement that further amendments to the Electoral Act will bring it into line with the Constitution. The Vice President is also reported to have urged MPs to acquaint themselves with 11 Bills soon to be laid before Parliament to ensure that they conform to the Constitution. When questioned by an MP he said, “What we are doing is constitutional to the letter”.

 

But this is rich indeed coming from a Vice President who has so recently flouted the letter of the Constitution and the Electoral Act. As audio evidence shows, he blatantly violated the Constitutional requirement that traditional leaders remain impartial and stay out of politics. He then added insult to injury by intimidating voters by threatening to “fence them out” in violation of the Electoral Act. The Former US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Todd Moss, was particularly scathing about the Vice President who “openly bragged about rigging the vote.”

 

Jacob Ngarivhume, whose party, Transform Zimbabwe, is contesting the Chiramanzu-Zibagwe by-election, has issued a strongly-worded statement (attached) criticising the Vice President. The Vice President’s unconstitutional and unlawful pronouncements renew fears of intimidation and fraud being used yet again as an electoral tool. The Voice for Democracy therefore calls upon the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to implement the letter of the law.

  • In terms of s.133G(c) of the Electoral Act, ZEC must call upon all political parties and candidates to publically undertake to abide by the code of conduct set out in the Fourth Schedule.

  • In terms of the Fourth Schedule, every political party and candidate is required to condemn, unreservedly and publically, any violence or intimidation, avowing not to take reprisals against any person because of the way they voted.

  •  

In view of the Vice President’s utterances, ZEC must call upon him to state categorically that traditional leaders will not be used unconstitutionally in a partisan role to intimidate voters.

 

But there is more. The Electoral Act [s.133H(1)] requires the appointment of a Special Police Liaison Officer (SPLO) for every general election and by-election to investigate politically motivated intimidation and violence. To our knowledge, this has not been done. Sub-section (2) requires the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission to establish and chair a Special Investigation Committee, which includes representatives of each political party contesting the election. Its task is to instruct the SPLO to investigate any intimidation or violence. Again, this Committee has not been established as required by law. It is ZEC’s duty to ensure that this Committee is established and immediately investigates the offences committed by the Vice President.

 

The Voice for Democracy calls upon all national election monitoring agencies, the Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights, and diplomatic missions to apply for accreditation as observers for these crucial by-elections. These are, after all, the seats vacated by the Vice President and the former Vice-President of Zimbabwe. In view of their policy of engagement with the Government of Zimbabwe, we appeal to all member countries of the European Union, and the European Union itself, to apply to observe these by-elections.

 

Dale Doré

Voice for Democracy

 

 

Transform Zimbabwe challenges Mnangagwa

Jacob Ngarivhume, President

 

Intimidation

Transform Zimbabwe deplores Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s shameless and unlawful intimidation of voters in Chirumanzu-Zibagwe constituency. By claiming to be able to identify anyone who votes against his wife, Auxillia, and then threatening to ‘fence them out’, Mnangagwa‘s utterances are a direct violation of our electoral laws.

 

The Electoral Act clearly states that intimidation includes “threatening to withhold from a person any assistance or benefit to which that person in legally entitled.” According to the Act, a person, who through intimidation compels others to vote for a political party or candidate, is guilty of an offence.

 

It is the duty of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to enforce Section 133G(c) of the Electoral Act. The Commission is obliged to call upon all candidates – most notably Vice President Mnangagwa and his wife, Auxillia – to make a public undertaking to abide by the code of conduct for political parties and candidates set out in the Fourth Schedule.

 

The Fourth Schedule of the Act requires all political parties, as well as their candidates and supporters, to promote conditions conducive to free, fair and democratic elections. They must promote elections conducted through a secret ballot in a climate of democratic tolerance. They must accept others political rights to present their political principles and ideas in a peaceful environment without intimidation or fear of reprisal.

 

Transform Zimbabwe calls upon the Vice President and his wife to uphold the rule of law by stating publically, as required by Section 4 of the Fourth Schedule, that everyone has the right to freely express their political beliefs and opinions, and to condemn unreservedly and publicly any violence or intimidation.

 

We, Transform Zimbabwe, the people of Zimbabwe, and the diplomatic community will be eagerly waiting to hear the Vice President’s public and unreserved condemnation of violence or intimidation – in word and deed.

 

Traditional Leaders

Transform Zimbabwe also points out that Vice President Mnanagawa’s intimidation and threats have been aggravated by his flagrant and unlawful solicitation of political support from traditional leaders for his party and their ZANU(PF) candidate. His call for voters to “go to the polls with the headman in front,” is unconstitutional.

 

Transform Zimbabwe reminds the Vice President – a former Justice Minister, who should know better – of the Constitutional provisions that he has sworn to uphold. Section 281(2) of our Constitution states that traditional leaders must not be members of any political party or in any way participate in partisan politics, or further the interests of any political party or cause. They must not violate the fundamental rights and freedoms of any person, including the right to vote freely for a candidate of their choice.

 

Transform Zimbabwe trusts that Vice President, the ZANU(PF) candidates and their supporters will uphold traditional leaders’ obligations in terms of the Constitution – both in word and deed.

 

Our Challenge

Transform Zimbabwe is baffled about why Vice President Mnangagwa deems it necessary to flout the laws and Constitution in his bid to secure a parliamentary seat for his wife. After all, he dismisses the other candidates, including Transform Zimbabwe’s Abigail Musambasi, as having no history. He brags that ZANU(PF) received 18,000 votes in the last election in Chiramanzu-Zibagwe, leaving both other candidates with a mere 2,000 votes between them. So, why should he fear a free and fair election? Why should he fear a ‘little known’ party like Transform Zimbabwe?

 

Transform Zimbabwe challenges the Vice President, his wife, and their party to uphold the laws and Constitution of Zimbabwe, to ensure a fair and level playing field, and to allow the constituents of Chiramanzu-Zibagwe to exercise their sovereign right to elect a leader of their choice.

 

Vigilance

But whether or not Mnanagagwa, his wife, and ZANU(PF) accept this challenge, Transform Zimbabwe will be on the ground monitoring their every threat and their every violation. These we will report to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission, as well as national monitors and international observers. And if we find sufficient evidence of electoral fraud that cause us to lose the elections, we will have no compunction in approaching the Electoral Court for redress.

 

4 March 2015

 
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