Vigil Diary 30-08-2008 PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 30 August 2008 19:58
Once again we had loads of South Africans passing by. They happily signed our petitions until they read them. Then they were outraged at our call to move the 2010 World Cup from South Africa so crossed their names out. We explained our position that South Africa is responsible for allowing the situation in Zimbabwe to deteriorate to the extent that it will endanger the people attending the World Cup. They (with one late exception) didn't seem to care.

One passer-by spent several minutes signing our petition and we noticed he took up five lines. He had come from the Disability Festival, Liberty , held in nearby Trafalgar Square . We were grateful to have his support.

At the end of a generally wet and overcast August, the sun came out and even Zimbabweans wilted in the humidity. As always, there were newcomers and they were particularly welcome as some of our regulars went to help out at Zimfest, an annual music and sports day in South London .

We were glad to have with us Louise Cameron, an artist and journalist, who was working on an installation for the Slade School of Art. She interviewed us as refugees and asked us to write a word on Zimbabwean flags to sum up our feelings. Peace, Harmony, Democracy, Disgraceful, Suffering, Hardship, Justice were among the words used. We will keep you posted when this artwork is on view. (Louise unfortunately got a parking ticket and perhaps this will be part of the installation!)

Founder Vigil member Ephraim Tapa took a Saturday off to go the Scotland to support the Glasgow Vigil. We will update you on this visit in the next diary.

The Vigil has been asked to publicise the following. If anyone can help, please contact this organisation directly ( Nick Donovan, Head of Campaigns, Policy and Research, Aegis Trust, , mobile + 44 7990 555 756, office + 44 207 613 5258).

“The Aegis Trust runs the Kigali Memorial Centre in Rwanda and the Holocaust Centre in the UK and conducts some campaigns about genocide and crimes against humanity - including for Darfur , Sudan . At the moment we're leading a push to tighten UK laws on genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.  We're uncovering a fair number of possible Rwandan, Sudanese and West African suspects present in the UK . I wondered whether you were aware of any suspected Zimbabwean perpetrators rumored to be living in the UK or elsewhere in Europe ?  Or perhaps suspects who have simply visited the UK recently - whether for surgery, for a holiday etc? They should be suspected of any of the following crimes against humanity and war crimes - systematic attacks against civilians including: murder, enslavement, deportation or forcible transfer, false imprisonment, rape or other sexual crimes, persecution of a national, ethnic, religious, cultural, gender or political group, apartheid, enforced disappearance, acts which cause great suffering to mental or physical health, the intentional denial of access to food and medicine, hostage taking, excessive destruction of property, pillaging a town, killing or wounding prisoners of war, intentionally attacking humanitarians or peacekeepers, attacking hospitals, schools, churches, mosques, temples etc and historic monuments. Please feel free to contact me in confidence if you're aware of any such individuals.”

FOR THE RECORD: 116 signed the register.


•  Next Glasgow Vigil . Saturday 13 th September 2008 , 2 – 6 pm. Venue: Argyle Street Precinct. For more information contact: Patrick Dzimba, 07990 724 137.

•  Zimbabwe Association's Women's Weekly Drop-in Centre . Fridays 10.30 am – 4 pm. Venue: T he Fire Station Community and ICT Centre, 84 Mayton Street , London N7 6QT, Tel: 020 7607 9764. Nearest underground: Finsbury Park . For more information contact the Zimbabwe Association 020 7549 0355 (open Tuesdays and Thursdays).


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.