Expensive holiday season – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 24th December 2016 PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 25 December 2016 13:22

As Zimbabweans tighten their belts at another bleak Christmas, President Mugabe is taking a month-long rest in Singapore. He left Harare by chartered plane on 20th December accompanied by his family, aides, security people and $6 million from the Reserve Bank which will have to last them until the end of January.

The holiday may cheer up Grace Mugabe who must have been annoyed to have been ordered by the High Court to return Harare properties she seized from a Dubai diamond dealer in a dispute over a $1.3 million gem she thought was not good enough.

Zimbabweans can relax for a while because the government has closed down for seasonal celebrations and will do nothing for five weeks or so. Then it will spring into life to prepare for the President’s 93rd birthday party in February. Judging from recent presidential birthdays, this will the grandmother of all parties. But it will cost a lot so people must put money aside for their contributions when Zanu PF youth knock on the door.

Zanu PF in the UK will no doubt happily contribute if they can lay their hands on bond notes. Prominent among the delegates at the Zanu PF Conference this month was Nick Mangwana, Chair of Zanu PF UK. His speech at the Conference suggesting that the Zimbabwean diaspora need not be given the vote has angered Zimbabweans in the UK (see: He also goes on to complain that the diaspora community is the breeding ground for activism against the Zimbabwean government. Well, these traitors are now calling for the deportation of Mangwana and other Zanu PF supporters in the UK.

Other points

  • The Vigil encountered Nick Mangwana most recently when he was cheerleader for Patrick Chinamasa on his begging trip to the UK in July. He was spotted photographing Vigil protesters outside a Chinamasa meeting in London and was challenged by Vigil Co-ordinator Fungayi Mabhunu (see: The next day a large group of Vigil protesters held up Chinamasa’s taxi for an hour by sitting in the road and making him late for a meeting with the Foreign Office.
  • News that the new constitution, agreed in 2013 after four years of long expensive negotiations is being amended to give the President more power only confirms what we at the Vigil have long maintained: that the whole constitution-making process was a waste of time, especially since the new constitution has yet to be observed three years later.
  • Thanks to those who arrived early to help set up: Kevin Gondo, Isabell Gwatidzo, Etines Kapiya, Fungayi Mabhunu, Honest Madondo, Phillip Mahlahla, Allen Mandaza, Zimazile Mguni, Roseline Mukucha, Alfredy Mukuvare, Xavier Murape, Cathrine Musa, Juliet Musandirire, Simbarashe Mutero, Patience Muyeye, Sharon Nziramasanga, Pretty Okechukwa, Sicelesile Phiri, Jennipher Sabe, Maxmus Savanhu and Ephraim Tapa. Thanks to Roseline, Cathrine and Pretty for looking after the front table, to Simbarashe for handing out flyers, and to Phillip, Alfredy, Maxmus, Kevin, Xavier and Allen for putting up the banners.

For latest Vigil pictures check: Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website. The facebook page for our sister organisation Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) ( has been hijacked by destructive elements from a group calling itself ZHRO Zimbabwean HR Charity. Please be advised that any postings on this page are not posted by ROHR.

FOR THE RECORD: 24 signed the register.


  • Monthly Prayer Vigil. Saturday 31st December from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy. Contact Beverley Mutandiro (07412053415) with names of Zimbabwean pastors and prayer groups who might want to participate.
  • Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 7th January. From 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy. The protest is to mark twenty-two months since Itai’s abduction by intelligence agents.
  • Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 7th January from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.
  • 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 Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF) meets regularly after the Vigil to discuss ways to help those back in Zimbabwe to fight oppression and achieve true democracy.
  • Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.
  • Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.
  • Facebook pages:

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.