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Emperor with no clothes – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 23rd April 2016 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 24 April 2016 14:34

The newish American Ambassador to Harare, Peter Harry Thomas Jnr, has quickly got the hang of Mugabe, speaking this week of his ‘wicked sense of humour’. Commenting on Mugabe’s ‘invisible sanctions’ mantra, Mr Thomas showed he had come to realise that the President is a joker (see: https://www.newsday.co.zw/2016/04/23/us-ambassador-denies-targeted-sanctions-hurting-ordinary-citizens/).

 

Hans Christian Anderson’s ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’ is a story about a vain emperor who is tricked into wearing what he is told are clothes that are invisible to those who are stupid. Everyone raves about his clothes until a child cries out ‘he isn’t wearing anything at all’.

 

It often takes an outsider to say that the emperor has no clothes. People were merely puzzled as Mugabe bowed to a picture of himself at his Independence Speechday.  They pretended not to see he was exposing himself (see: http://www.newzimbabwe.com/news-28808-WATCH+Mugabe+bows+to+own+portrait/news.aspx).

 

Zanu PF supporters didn’t dare see the humour when Mugabe told them that the economy was on a rebound, with firms reopening for business and creating jobs. They didn’t even laugh when he said: ‘My government is determined to translate political independence into meaningfulness by attending to the socio-economic needs of our people’.

 

Even claims that bankrupt parastatals such as Air Zimbabwe and National Railways of Zimbabwe had come out of the woods, failed to draw a smile, let alone his comment that ‘progress has been made in the development of social infrastructure in health, education and housing’. Nobody laughed when he promised to improve the well-being of government workers so that they can earn salaries above the poverty datum line. Perhaps they did not get the ‘wicked’ joke that he has promised the International Monetary Fund to halve the government wage bill this year.

 

There was not even a giggle when he concluded ‘one of the greatest tributes we can pay to Zimbabwe is to shun corruption, regionalism and nepotism’ (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit-m-economy-on-rebound-mugabe-newsday-zimbabwe/).

 

Mind you many people also didn’t get the joke when he promptly flew off to the United States for the ceremonial signing of the UN climate change agreement and droned on as usual about sanctions when signatories – mainly lower-ranking officials – were supposed to keep their remarks to 40 seconds.

 

But those at the UN meeting realized that Mugabe had not travelled all the way to New York for a mere 40 seconds . . . he and his cronies no doubt had serious shopping to do for some more new clothes.

 

Other points

·       Chris Foxon, the producer of a play about Zimbabwe ‘After Independence’ is visiting the Vigil on 30th April between 4 and 5 pm to tell us about the play which opens in London next month. For details see ‘Events and Notices’.

·       Thanks to those who arrived early to help set up: Alfredy Mukuvare, Cathrine Musa, Chipo Parirenyatwa, Eletha Mpofu, Eva Sanyahokwe, Fungayi Mabhunu, Michael Sirewu, Phillip Mahlahla, Portiah Tobaiwa, Roseline Mukucha and Traiphine Maguwu. Thanks to Roseline, Cathrine, Portiah and Traiphine for looking after the front table and to Chipo for her usual efficient selling of wristbands and raffle tickets for the ROHR Birmingham ball. Thanks also to the team putting up the high banners: Phillip, Michael and Alfredy.

 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

 

FOR THE RECORD: 31 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       ROHR Birmingham Branch Independence Ball. Saturday 30th April from 3 pm till late. Venue: Centrala, 4 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RT. African cuisine, £20 a head, children free. For more information, contact: Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, JaneMary Mapfumo 07412 310429 and Tecla Bandawe 07450507650.

·       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 us.

·       Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 30th April from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 7th May from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark fourteen months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       ROHR National Executive meeting. Saturday 7th May from 11 am to 1.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see below.

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 7th May from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. 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 sign at street level. It's between a newsagent and an optician. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

·       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.

·       Nottingham demonstration against farm looting Zimbabwean doctor. Friday 13th May from 12 noon – 3 pm. Venue: outside The Willows Medical Centre, Church Street, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 1RJ. The Vigil and ROHR are continuing the campaign to have Dr Nyatsuro’s British citizenship revoked. More information to follow.

·       ROHR Reading branch community outreach and general meeting. Saturday 21st May 2016. Community outreach from 11.45 am – 1.30 pm: Venue: Broad Street. Awareness campaign on ‘Mugabe must go’. General meeting from 2,30 – 5 pm:  Venue: RISC 35-39 London Street, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4PS. For further enquiries contact: Nicodimus Muganhu 07877386792, Charles Mararirakwenda 07964731721, Joshua Kahari 07877246251, Shylette Chipangura 07828929806, Deborah Harrry 07578894896, Sihle Sibanda 07985712749.

·       Play: ‘After Independence’. 4th – 28th May at the Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL. The play is by May Sumbwanyambe and tackles the issues of independence and government in Zimbabwe. More information is available here: http://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/after-independence/2016-05-04/.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/746-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2015. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

 
36 years of destruction – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 16th April 2016 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 17 April 2016 14:06

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/26443126756/sizes/m/

 

As we marked Zimbabwe’s 36th independence anniversary, exiles in the UK were joined by Mugabe himself at Saturday’s Vigil outside the London Embassy. His Excellency, in the form of Fungayi Mabhunu in our Mugabe mask and carrying a poster reading ’36 years of me. What else can I destroy?’, answered some of our questions.

 

The first was how he justified spending $20 million on foreign trips so far this year at a time when the economy is alleged not to be booming. ‘Well, this trip to London is costing nothing’, he said. ‘As you may know I have recently had to make one or three essential visits to the Far East so I have collected lots of air miles’ (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit-m-mugabe-blows-20m-on-trips-dailynews-live/).

 

Our second question to his well-travelled Excellency was about  the 300 cattle that he announced he had donated to the African Union last year to reduce the AU’s dependence on Western aid. ‘It just struck me that no one had ever thought of a gift by way of cattle to the AU’, he said, brushing aside reports that none of the beasts had been sent . . . (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit-m-mugabes-300-au-cow-gift-non-existent/).

 

Mugabe was then asked about Zanu PF’s rejection of genetically modified food  -  a move condemned by  Zimbabwean farmer Nyasha Mudukuti in an article in the Wall Street Journal:  So my country – a country that can’t feed itself – will refuse what millions around the world eat safely every day . . . we’re apparently better dead than fed’ (see: http://www.agweb.com/blog/the-truth-about-trade/zimbabwes-rejection-of-gmo-food-aid-is-a-humanitarian-outrage/).

 

The nonagarian  went on: ‘What some people don’t realise is the effect of illegal sanctions. As well as inflicting aids on  Africa and causing our drought the West is now determined to exterminate us with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) so that they can control us like they do the troublemakers who caused chaos in Harare on Thursday in an attempt at regime change’.

 

The Vigil is pleased to see that our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe was prominent among those who took part in the MDC T demonstration on Thursday. ROHR in the UK followed it up by gathering outside the Zimbabwe Embassy on Friday carrying posters such as ‘Old Clueless Mugabe must go’. As usual, the Embassy was closed. 38 people attended.

 

Other points

·       A meeting of the Zimbabwe Action Forum after the Vigil congratulated the British government on refusing to accept Mugabe’s proposed new ambassador to London. He recently stole a farm in Figtree. We wonder whether the British government’s  move follows the fuss we made over the Nottingham farm looting GP Dr Sylvester Nyatsuro.  We agreed to send our congratulations to the government and ask them what action they were taking to remove Nyatsuro’s British citizenship so that he can pursue his new found mission as a farmer in Zimbabwe.  It was agreed to have another protest outside Dr Nyatsuro’s clinic on Friday 13th May. See ‘Events and Notices’ for details.

·       The Forum decided to approach the Botswana High Commission in London to arrange a date to hand over our petition to be passed on to President Khama as Chair of Southern African Development Community. The petition calls on SADC to prepare to take action  to stop a meltdown in Zimbabwe.

·       It was good to welcome back Takunda Maravanyika who performed a piece of political theatre at one of our forums in January. For his PhD work he interviewed several people to get their reactions to  his performance. 

·       Thanks to those who arrived early to help set up: Humphrey Dube, Isabell Gwatidzo, Etines Kapiya, Traiphine Maguwu, Phillip Mahlahla, Jenniffer Maritsa, Cephas Maswoswa, Eletha Mpofu, Roseline Mukucha, Marlon Nyamakanga, Chipo Parirenyatwa and Elector Zvorwadza. Thanks to Roseline, Etines and Eletha for looking after the front table and to Chipo and Isabell for supervising the lucky dip to raise funds for ROHR. Thanks also to Phillip, Humphrey and Cephas for putting up the high banners and tarpaulin and a final thank you to Chipo for her efficient selling of the “Mugabe must go / has gone’ wristbands.

 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

 

FOR THE RECORD: 45 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       ROHR Birmingham Branch Independence Ball. Saturday 30th April from 3 pm till late. Venue: Centrala, 4 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RT. African cuisine, £20 a head, children free. For more information, contact: Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, JaneMary Mapfumo 07412 310429 and Tecla Bandawe 07450507650.

·       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 us.

·       Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 30th April from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 7th May from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark fourteen months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       ROHR National Executive meeting. Saturday 7th May from 11 am to 1.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see below.

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 7th May from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. 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 sign at street level. It's between a newsagent and an optician. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

·       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.

·       Nottingham demonstration against farm looting Zimbabwean doctor. Friday 13th May from 12 noon – 3 pm. Venue: outside The Willows Medical Centre, Church Street, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 1RJ. The Vigil and ROHR are continuing the campaign to have Dr Nyatsuro’s British citizenship revoked. More information to follow.

·       Play: ‘After Independence’. 4th – 28th May at the Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL. The play is by May Sumbwanyambe and tackles the issues of independence and government in Zimbabwe. More information is available here: http://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/after-independence/2016-05-04/. The producer has contacted the Vigil for our input and plans to visit us to discuss this.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/746-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2015. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

 
Can of maggots – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 9th April 2016 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 11 April 2016 15:33

Zimbabweans in exile join in demanding a commission of inquiry into the involvement of Zimbabweans in offshore tax havens and believe it will open a can of maggots that have been sucking dry the carcase of our economy.

 

The leaking of millions of documents from the dodgy Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca has exposed the involvement of Zanu PF financiers Billy Rautenbach and Nicholas van Hoogstraten. This was predictable but it is also alleged that Mugabe himself has used the firm to hide his vast wealth in havens around the world.

 

The MDC T MP Eddie Cross says Mugabe’s personal wealth is estimated at over $3 billion gained from all sorts of activities in Zimbabwe and the region. He adds: ‘The disclosure by Mr. Mugabe that some $15 billion in revenues had somehow vanished from the Marange diamond fields over a six year period from 2008 to 2015 reveals the extent of these activities. He is known to own, directly or indirectly, luxury homes in South Africa (Sandton and Durban North), Hong Kong, Singapore and Dubai as well as in Harare.’

 

The Japanese commentator Ken Yamamoto, who closely follows Zimbabwean affairs, describes Mugabe’s disclosure as: ‘the mother of all scandals’. He says: ‘With the stolen $15 billion, Zimbabwe could have provided its economy a huge bailout, funding refurbishment of railways infrastructure, construction of power plants, construction and expansion of national highways, a bailout to the sinking industrial sector, provided clean water in cities, funded alternative agriculture and processing industries and invested in clean energy.’

 

Yamamoto goes on: For a 92-year old man whose leadership has wasted an entire generation to laugh and crack jokes while talking about such grand theft under his watch is a vulgar insult to millions of jobless Zimbabweans and millions more who are presently being fed by donors.’

 

He concludes: ‘This kind of plunder must immediately make Zimbabwe pass a vote of no confidence in Mugabe and his government. If this theft does not cause Zimbabweans to demand that he resign, then nothing else will. In that case, going forward, Zimbabweans must just be left to their own devices and the donors currently feeding the population must just take their efforts to other countries. The country cannot be helped. And no more of this nonsense that Zimbabweans are the most literate people in Africa.’ (See: http://www.thezimbabwean.co/2016/03/yamamoto-president-bob-must-be-fired/).

 

War veteran and former Zanu PF insider Margaret Dongo also has no illusions about the greed and corruption in Zanu PF. In a recent interview with the Daily News she said: ‘I left Zanu PF in 1995, and watching from the terraces I am seeing people fighting for a dwindling gravy puddle. The party is a sinking ship and it’s all about who has power now to access more of the little loot left before the inevitable big bang.’

 

She went on to say: ‘The 90 per cent unemployment obtaining in the country, the starving masses that the government is unable to feed, the dilapidated infrastructure all-around, the serious shortage of drugs, deteriorating education standards, poor sanitary facilities are all a result of Zanu PF's misrule.’ (See: https://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2016/03/16/mugabe-zanu-pf-are-gone-dongo).

 

Other points

·       Many Vigil supporters attended a demonstration called by the London branch of the MDCT UK outside the Embassy on Thursday 7th April in protest at the looting of the Marange diamond fields.

·       The Vigil marked thirteen months since the abduction by intelligence agents of human rights activist Itai Dzamara on 9th March last year. The Zimbabwean authorities have refused to say what they did with him but it is assumed he was murdered like so many others. Nearly 6,000 have been abducted in the last 16 years (see: http://www.thezimbabwean.co/2016/03/abduction-2000-2016/).

·       ROHR Reading branch’s Saturday 19th March protest about the Mugabe regime has been reported in the local press (see: http://www.getreading.co.uk/news/reading-berkshire-news/reading-branch-zimbabwe-human-rights-11136904).

·       ROHR Central London branch is to protest outside the Embassy on Friday calling on Mugabe to go. For more information see ‘Events and Notices’. The Vigil will be marking Zimbabwe’s independence anniversary on Saturday 16th April.

·       Thanks to those who came early to help set up: Isaac Chawasarira, Kevin Gondo, Isabell Gwatidzo, Etines Kapiya, Fungayi Mabhunu, Phillip Mahlahla, Cephas Maswoswa, Roseline Mukucha, Esther Munyira, Chipo Parirenyatwa and Michael Sirewu. Thanks to Roseline, Isabell and Esther for looking after the front table, to Chipo for energetically selling the ‘Mugabe must go / has gone’ wristbands and to Phillip for taking charge of the team putting up the high banners and tarpaulin.

 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

 

FOR THE RECORD: 36 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       ROHR Central London branch ‘Mugabe must go protest’. Friday 15th April outside the Zimbabwe Embassy from 11 am to 1 pm. Please come and join Central London to make a big statement on the Friday before the 36th anniversary of Zimbabwe’s Independence. 36 years of Mugabe – time to go!

·       ROHR National Executive meeting. Saturday 16th April from 11 am to 1.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see below.

·       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 us.

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 16th April from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. 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 sign at street level. It's between a newsagent and an optician. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

·       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.

·       Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 16th April from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       ROHR Birmingham Branch Independence Ball. Saturday 30th April from 3 pm till late. Venue: Centrala, 4 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RT. African cuisine, £20 a head, children free. For more information, contact: Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, JaneMary Mapfumo 07412 310429 and Tecla Bandawe 07450507650.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 7th May from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark fourteen months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       Play: ‘After Independence’. 4th – 28th May at the Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL. The play is by May Sumbwanyambe and tackles the issues of independence and government in Zimbabwe. More information is available here: http://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/after-independence/2016-05-04/. The producer has contacted the Vigil for our input and plans to visit us to discuss this.

·       Nottingham demonstration against farm looting Zimbabwean doctor. Date to be advised. Venue: outside The Willows Medical Centre, Church Street, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 1RJ. The Vigil and ROHR are continuing the campaign to have Dr Nyatsuro’s British citizenship revoked. More information to follow.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/746-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2015. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

LAST_UPDATED2
 
The great demise – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 2nd April 2016 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 10 April 2016 13:26
There is growing concern in the diaspora about the well-being of Zimbabweans when Mugabe goes. People in the know have already accepted that one day Mugabe will leave us. They have prepared themselves – made a plan as it were. But the people the Vigil worry most about are those who have been led to believe that Mugabe is semi-divine. And it is clear there are many of them. For them the loss will be cataclysmic.

 

Mugabe has gone to see his doctors in Singapore twice in the last few weeks so it is clear that he is about to take leave of us. We must be brave. Others have gone through similar trauma. We remember the mass hysteria in North Korea at the departure of the Great Leader Kim Jong Il, whose people had been led to believe that he could never get ill. Scenes of public grief were broadcast around the world. Zimbabweans must show we are made of sterner stuff.

 

We expect Harare to come to even more of a halt when the great transition occurs. So outside help will be urgently required to minimise grief-related suicides and post-traumatic stress disorders.

 

To do our bit, we in the diaspora are appealing to the United Nations to prepare to send teams of bereavement counsellors who could fan out across the country. Para-psychotherapists could even be air-dropped in remote areas.

 

The Vigil’s approach is two-pronged. We have also written to the American Ambassador in London urging the US to oppose any IMF / World Bank loans to Zimbabwe until the situation is clarified. Surely no-one wants the money to end up in the wrong hands?

 

Here is our letter:

 

Dear Ambassador Barzun

 

With the Mugabe regime nearing its end, Zimbabwean exiles in the UK wish to convey our reservations about the apparent readiness of the International Monetary Fund to advance new loans to Zimbabwe.

 

We ask what purpose this financial injection will serve when there is no clear idea of who will receive the money? We draw your attention to the latest index of economic freedom which concludes that Zimbabwe remains one of the most repressed economies in the world due to rampant corruption and government mismanagement (see: https://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2016/03/26/zim-one-of-africa-s-poorest-economies?src=ilaw).

 

We urge the United States to take the advice of Bob Corker, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who called on President Obama to prevent new lending to Zimbabwe unless there is meaningful progress to restore the rule of law and improve human rights (see: https://www.foreign.senate.gov/press/chair/release/corker-no-new-lending-to-zimbabwe-without-meaningful-reform).

 

We draw your attention to the recent report by the International Crisis Group which expresses doubts that the ruling Zanu PF party can ‘walk the talk’ of reform.

 

The Vigil believes that any financial help to prop up the odious Zanu PF regime will simply prolong the suffering of the people of Zimbabwe.

 

Other points

·       We were alarmed to receive a phone call from Vigil supporter Victor Gatsi. He was in detention and booked on a Kenyan Airways flight back to Zimbabwe on 2nd April. We started a phone campaign against the airline and with a timely legal intervention by his lawyer we are pleased to say that his deportation has been stayed. A special thanks to Fungayi Mabhunu for his tireless work on this. Michael Sirewu led prayers for Victor at the Vigil.

·       Action for Southern Africa (ACTSA) the successor organization to the Anti-Apartheid Movement, has made a submission to the Universal Periodic Review of the Republic of Zimbabwe 26th Session of the UPR Working Group. ACTSA calls for an independent commission of enquiry into the case of Itai Dzamara who was abducted last March. It also calls for election observers from all foreign governments and international institutions to be allowed to monitor elections and calls on the Harare authorities to enforce the rule of law (see: http://www.actsa.org/newsroom/2016/04/actsa-calls-on-un-to-tackle-human-rights-abuses-in-zimbabwe/).

·       Thanks to those who came early to help set up on a sunny Vigil: Philip Mahlahla, Jacob Mandipira, Isaac Chavasarira, Michael and Lisa Sirewu, Roseline Mukucha, Audrey Chihoho, Tatonga Gutah, Tafadzwa Buka, Sharon Moyo, Chipo Parirenyatwa, Fungayi Mabhunu, Michelle Makoni, Sharon Moyo, Eletha Mpofu, Catherine Musa, Sidumiso Nyoni and Newman Richard. Thanks to Audrey, Roseline and Sharon for looking after the front table

 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

 

FOR THE RECORD:  36 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       MDC-T London branch protest. Thursday 7th April from 11 am – 1pm. Venue: outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. This is in solidarity with a demonstration being held in Zimbabwe on the same day to highlight the plight of Zimbabweans who are surviving on less than a dollar per day when the Government of Zimbabwe readily admits the misappropriation of USD15 billion.  Contact Clemence Munyukwi 07889667686 and Sharon Moyo 07877224113.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 9th April from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark thirteen months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       ROHR Coventry relaunch. Saturday 9th April from 2 – 9 pm. Venue: Binley Private Members’ Club and Banqueting Suite, 50 Grange Avenue, Binley, West Midlands CV3 2ED. £10 a head for all you can eat buffet, children free. Contacts: Melody Magejo 07490913486, Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, Edward Murota 07979312148 and Sally Mutseyami 07448730581.

·       ROHR Central London branch ‘Mugabe must go’ protest’. Friday 15th April outside the Zimbabwe Embassy from 11 am to 1 pm. Please come and join Central London to make a big statement on the Friday before the 36th anniversary of Zimbabwe’s Independence. 36 years of Mugabe – time to go!

·       ROHR National Executive meeting. Saturday 16th April from 11 am to 1.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see below.

·       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 us.

·       Zimbabwe Action  Forum (ZAF). Saturday 16th April from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. 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 sign at street level. It's between a newsagent and an optician. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

·       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.

·       Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 16th April from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       ROHR Birmingham Branch Independence Ball. Saturday 30th April from 3 pm till late. Venue: Centrala, 4 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RT. African cuisine, £20 a head, children free. For more information, contact: Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, JaneMary Mapfumo 07412 310429 and Tecla Bandawe 07450507650.

·       Play: ‘After Independence’. 4th – 28th May at the Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL. The play is by May Sumbwanyambe and tackles the issues of independence and government in Zimbabwe. More information is available here: http://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/after-independence/2016-05-04/. The producer has contacted the Vigil for our input and plans to visit us to discuss this.

·       Nottingham demonstration against farm looting Zimbabwean doctor. Date to be advised. Venue: outside The Willows Medical Centre, Church Street, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 1RJ. The Vigil and ROHR are continuing the campaign to have Dr Nyatsuro’s British citizenship revoked. More information to follow.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/746-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2015. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

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Appeal to MPs – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 26th March 2016 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 27 March 2016 19:29

The Vigil has written to two prominent British MPs to seek their support for the expulsion from the UK of a Nottingham GP Dr Sylvester Nyatsuro and his wife Veronica who have seized a farm in Zimbabwe.

 

The MPs are the former long-time cabinet minister Ken Clarke who represents the Conservative Party in Rushcliffe constituency, Nottingham, in which the Nyatsuros have a large and luxurious home and Vernon Coaker, a minister in the last Labour government who represents the neighbouring constituency of Gedling, in which the Nyatsuros run an NHS clinic. Below is the letter we have sent them:

 

Zimbabwean exiles in the UK ask for your help as we continue our protest against Nottingham GP Dr Sylvester Nyatsuro and his wife Veronica who run a NHS clinic in Carlton, Nottingham. They have violently seized a farm in Zimbabwe from a white Zimbabwean couple who bought it some 30 years ago with the approval of the Mugabe regime. Dr Nyatsuro claims he has been allocated the farm although he has lived in the UK for the past 15 years and is a British citizen.

 

You will be aware of the desperate situation in Zimbabwe, in particular the real prospect of starvation. The UN recently warned up to a third of the population are facing hunger.

 

The Zimbabwe Vigil which campaigns in the UK for human rights in Zimbabwe, along with our sister organisation the  Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe, has submitted a petition to the government calling for the revocation of the Nyatsuros’ British citizenship (see: http://zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/760-kick-out-zanu-pf-zimbabwe-vigil-diary-27th-february-2016).

 

The petition is currently being considered by the Home Office. We feel that the support of a  former Conservative Lord Chancellor and a former Labour Home Office minister such as yourselves would add weight to our request. 

 

On a broader front we are campaigning for the situation in Zimbabwe to be discussed in Parliament and have enlisted the support of Kate Hoey MP, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Zimbabwe and, on the Conservative side, Alok Sharma MP for Reading West and others.

 

We have staged a number of demonstrations outside the Nyatsuros’ clinic which have received widespread publicity and plan to stage another demonstration there on 29th April to keep up the pressure on them to make up their minds between farming in Zimbabwe and doctoring in the UK. 

 

Other Points

·       There is a letter on our campaigns page about the Nyatsuros which supporters can send to their own MPs (see: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/764-suggested-letter-to-your-mp).

·       One of our supporters Emmaculate Tshuma was picked up by the immigration authorities early on Wednesday morning. Emmaculate, who is only 18, was dragged out of bed and treated very roughly and is now in detention. There is a petition to the Home Secretary about how she was treated. To sign go to: https://www.change.org/p/rt-hon-theresa-may-mp-stop-the-deportation-of-emmaculate-to-zimbabwe?recruiter=52935447&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink. A video about this is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URjgOZSoIBI. A collection was made for Emmaculate at the Vigil.

·       Zimbabweans await with baited breath the outcome of Mugabe’s visit to Japan. Not to hear what tea was served at his meeting with the Emperor but because the purpose of his journey is obviously to consult his doctors in Singapore for a second time in the past few weeks.

·       Quote of the week: ‘Zhuwao’s statement is the height of crass insanity and vindicates the PDP’s position that there are no genuine reformers in Zanu PF, but only looters and grabbers’ – People’s Democratic Party spokesperson Jacob Mafume, speaking about the 1st April indigenisation deadline set by Mugabe’s nephew. See the article by Eddie Cross of the MDC T for an analysis of the lunacy involved: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit-m-april-fools-day-the-zimbabwean/.

·       On a blustery wet Easter Saturday thanks to those who were there at the start to set up: Tatonga Gutah, Isabell Gwatidzo, Fungayi Mabhunu, Anna Mafunga, Michelle Makoni, Patricia Masamba, Eletha Mpofu, Roseline Mukucha, Fungisai Mupandira, Marlon Nyamakanga and Chipo Parirenyatwa. Thanks to Roseline, Isabell and Etines for looking after the front table and to Chipo for selling all the wristbands we had at the Vigil. Thanks to the team who put up the tarpaulin and the high banners: Tatonga, Fungayi and Marlon. Thanks also to those who stayed till the end to help pack up: Rashiwe Bayisayi, Tafadzwa Buka, Percy Dube, Isabell Gwatidzo, Etines Kapiya, Fungayi Mabhunu, Anna Mafunga, Michelle Makoni, Patricia, Masamba, Lipi Mhlope, Eletha Mpofu, Roselyne Mubayina, Roseline Mukucha, Fungisai Mupandira, Beverley Mutandiro and Chipo Parirenyatwa.

 

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

 

FOR THE RECORD: 22 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       ROHR International UK Chapter Training Day. Saturday 2nd April from 12 noon – 5 pm. Venue: The Salvation Army, Kildare Street, Leicester LE1 3FY. Directions: opposite the Peking Chinese Restaurant in the City Centre. Training covers outline of ROHR International, leadership skills and departmental operations. Contacts: Tino Mashonganyika 07463272078, Enniah Dube 07403439707 and Nicodimus Muganhu 07877386792.

·       Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 2nd April from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 9th April from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark thirteen months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       ROHR Coventry Relaunch. Saturday 9th April from 2 – 9 pm. Venue: Binley Private Members’ Club and Banqueting Suite, 50 Grange Avenue, Binley, West Midlands CV3 2ED. £10 a head for all you can eat buffet, children free. Contacts: Melody Magejo 07490913486, Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, Edward Murota 07979312148 and Sally Mutseyami 07448730581.

·       ROHR Central London Branch ‘Mugabe must go’ protest’. Friday 15th April outside the Zimbabwe Embassy from 11 am to 1 pm. Please come and join Central London to make a big statement on the Friday before the 36th anniversary of Zimbabwe’s Independence. 36 years of Mugabe – time to go!

·       ROHR National Executive meeting. Saturday 16th April from 11 am to 1.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see below.

·       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 us.

·       Zimbabwe Action  Forum (ZAF). Saturday 16th April from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. 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 sign at street level. It's between a newsagent and an optician. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

·       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.

·       Nottingham demonstration against farm looting Zimbabwean doctor. Friday 29th April from 12 noon – 3 pm. Venue: outside The Willows Medical Centre, Church Street, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 1RJ. The Vigil and ROHR are continuing the campaign to have Dr Nyatsuro’s British citizenship revoked. More information to follow.

·       ROHR Birmingham Branch Independence Ball. Saturday 30th April from 3 pm till late. Venue: Centrala, 4 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RT. African cuisine, £20 a head, children free. For more information, contact: Gladys Muduve 07956 430115, JaneMary Mapfumo 07412 310429 and Tecla Bandawe 07450507650.

·       Play: ‘After Independence’. 4th – 28th May at the Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL. The play is by May Sumbwanyambe and tackles the issues of independence and government in Zimbabwe. More information is available here: http://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/after-independence/2016-05-04/. The producer has contacted the Vigil for our input and plans to visit us to discuss this.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds monthly meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/746-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2015. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835

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