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IMF says no money for Zimbabwe – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 12th September 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 13 September 2015 14:02

The International Monetary Fund says that even if the Zimbabwean government makes economic reforms it will take at least three years before it can expect loans from international lenders.

 

The head of an IMF mission which has just visited Zimbabwe, Domenico Fanizza, said there were no quick and easy fixes to Zimbabwe’s economic problems and spoke of the need to deepen reforms. The IMF made it clear that Zimbabwe needed to create a friendly investment climate and mentioned in particular the need for clarity on the indigenisation policy. It added that the top priority was to reduce public sector employment costs.

 

Finance Minister Chinamasa has already said he wants to reduce the wage bill from more than 80% of government revenue to less than 40% in line with IMF recommendations, adding to the unemployment crisis (see: http://www.zimeye.com/imf-no-cash-to-zimbabwe-for-the-next-3-years/ and http://www.theindependent.co.zw/2015/09/11/zim-faces-tougher-times-ahead-imf/).

 

For his part, the European Ambassador to Zimbabwe Philippe van Damme this week said Zimbabwe needed a return to the rule of law if it is to attract foreign investment. He said investors were looking for ‘predictability of the economic and financial environment’ based on a legal framework that respects the principles of accountability, transparency and non-discrimination (see: http://www.theindependent.co.zw/2015/09/11/zim-must-return-to-the-rule-of-law-eu-ambassador/).

 

The comment by the EU Ambassador and damning assessment by the IMF will be part of the message the Vigil will be presenting to any customers gullible enough to attend a Zanu PF fundraiser in London on 22nd September hosted by the international law firm Stephenson Harwood LLP (acting on behalf of the shadowy ZBN and CMG international media group).

 

Here is a letter we are sending to Stephenson Harwood;

 

‘We learn that you are facilitating a meeting to prop up the illegal regime of Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe. He has maintained his grip on power through rigged elections and the galvanising force in his regime is the looting of the country’s resources.

 

This is to advise you that we will be outside your office on 22nd September protesting against the visit by representatives of the regime. We note that among the three Mugabe ministers attending is Obert Mpofu. If you had performed due diligence you would be aware that he is said to be one of the most corrupt men in Zimbabwe. For details of his vast, unaccountable wealth see for instance: http://nehandaradio.com/2012/11/16/from-rags-to-riches-the-obert-mpofu-story/.

 

We will draw to the attention of prospective investors to observations by the IMF mission which has just visited Zimbabwe calling for clarity on the regime’s propensity to steal everything and the latest remarks by the EU Ambassador to Zimbabwe urging Mugabe to bring back the rule of law and respect for property rights.’

 

The Vigil remembered civil rights activist Itai Dzamara on the 6-month anniversary of his abduction by government agents. A group of five or so Zimbabwean men came to the Vigil table and questioned us about our poster: ‘Who killed Itai Dzamara’. They demanded to know how we knew he had been killed. They also read our petition condemning Mugabe and threw it down without signing it. This is in keeping with iefforts to destabilise the Vigil by people who we suspect are  paid by the CIO. We suppose it is to be expected with the increased activity in Zimbabwe of our sister organisation Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR). 

 

Other points

·       Ephraim Tapa and Rose Benton were interviewed by the International Business Times about the Vigil and the situation in Zimbabwe, see: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/focus-torture-rape-disappearances-rampant-zimbabwe-1519414.

·       Thanks to those who came early to help set up: Esther Nyambi, Humphrey Dube, Michael Tinarwo, Livert Zhuwao and Fungayi Mabhunu. Thanks to Esther, Livert and Humphrey for looking after the front table throughout the Vigil.

 

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: 19 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 19th September from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. From the Vigil it’s about a ten 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.

·       ROHR Reading branch general meeting and outreach. Saturday 19th September from 1130 am – 5 pm. Venue: RISC 35-39 London Street, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4PS. For further enquiries contact: Nicodimus Muganhu (Chair) 07877386792, Shylette Chipangura (Secretary) 07828929806 and Deborah Harry (Treasurer) 07748723974.

·       ROHR Southampton branch meeting. Saturday 19th September from 1 – 3 pm. Venue: Eastleigh Library, 1st Floor, Swan Centre, Eastleigh, SO50 5SF. Contact: Sally Mutseyami (Chair) 07448730581, Grace Rukure (Secretary) 07462103397 and Edward Mukuze (Info & Publicity Officer) 07463975108.

·       ROHR Leicester branch meeting. Saturday 19th September 2015 from 1.30 – 5 pm. Venue: Methodist Church 10a Bishop Street, Town Hall Square, Leicester LE1 6AF. For more information please contact: Enniah Dube (Chair) 07403439707, Christopher Kamuzonde (Treasurer) 07449150041 and Moline Nyabonda (Information and Publicity) 079612505525.

·       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.

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 19th September from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can meeting. Saturday 26th September at 12 noon. Venue: The Theodore Bullfrog, 26-30 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.

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

·       Zimbabwe Vigil’s 13th Anniversary and monthly Itai Dzamara protest. Saturday 10th October from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark seven months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 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/pages/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights/301811392835

·       SW Radio Africa’s website and sound archive is being hosted on www.archive.org. Go to the site and type in swradioafrica which will link you to snapshots of their site over the years and at the top of that page a link to their website where, under podcasts, you will find the audio.

 
‘What have we to lose?’ – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary, 5th September 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 06 September 2015 14:01

Photolinks:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/90023465@N03/20905023818/sizes/m/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/90023465@N03/20950593498/sizes/m/

 

This week the Vigil’s sister organization Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe took to the streets of Harare and Bulawayo. They staged a demonstration in the capital against the Mugabe regime and joined in a protest march in Bulawayo against pre-paid water meters which it is argued will worsen the situation of the poor.

 

Here is an account of what happened drawn from messages on What’s App.

 

Tuesday 1st September 

·       14.30 from Harare: ‘Police refused permission to march for no apparent reason’ (for demo planned for 2nd).

 

Wednesday 2nd

·       12.23 photos of demo start appearing.

·       12.45 from Harare: ‘To all our brave cadres today thank you for defying the regime’.

·       12.47: ‘Lest some may think it was a stroll in the park – no … the police were armed to the teeth at our proposed starting and ending points. Like the wise man from the East we changed routes.’

·       13.14 message from ROHR President Ephraim Tapa in London: ‘Well done comrades. The race begins now. Together we can.’

·       Other messages of congratulation come in.

·       17.36 from Harare: ‘Thanks for your encouragement. The battle line is set. No turning back now.’

·       19.08 from Harare: ‘What developments in place for Bulawayo . . ?’

 

Thursday 3rd – discussions about upcoming Bulawayo demo.

 

Friday 4th

·       09.03 Ephraim Tapa: ‘For now we have Bulawayo as our focus. Is everything ok over there?’

·       11.22 from Bulawayo: ‘Things shaping up. Stay close. Bulawayo residents demonstrating against pre-paid water meters and poor service delivery’.

·       11.26 first picture and message from Bulawayo ‘ People of all ages streaming in’.

·       13.27 picture identifying Stanley Square with a message ‘I was asked to give a solidarity speech on behalf of ROHR Zimbabwe International, and good people I nailed it before an estimated 3,000 at Stanley Square.’

·       13.47 from same person: ‘Pray for us. After this the regime will not love it. Security.’

·       More photos come in.

·       18.35: Ephraim Tapa: ‘Congratulations guys. We can continue to go from strength to strength. And yes, together we can.’

·       20.07 from Bulawayo: ‘Good people I wish you were all in Bulawayo today. We had a wonderful day and now people know about ROHR and we had our flyers and everyone wanted to be part of us. We thank God for this day coz it was the birth of ROHR in Bulawayo.’

·       20.43 onwards messages from Bulawayo: ‘Our dream and vision will never die’, ‘Together as one’ and ‘What have we to lose’.

 

Saturday 5th

·       08.49 from Bulawayo: ‘Bulawayo has set a precedent. An estimated crowd of 3000 took to the streets demonstrating against the proposed installation of pre-paid water meters. Like a true giant ROHR’s banners led the procession from Town House to Stanley Square where speeches were delivered’.

 

Vigil co-ordinator Fungayi Mabhunu said he’d received a message from Harare about the demo there. It said people were very supportive. They identified with demands for human rights.

 

Other points

·       Ephraim Tapa said he had advised ROHR in Harare that it was their constitutional right to demonstrate regardless of what the police said. Ephraim, who was speaking at the Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF) held after the Vigil, disclosed he had just made an undercover visit to Zimbabwe. He said plans were underway for demonstrations in other areas. ‘Very soon you will see a lot of things happening in Zimbabwe at our instigation’, he said. ‘People are looking to us in the diaspora to take the lead.’ Ephraim said he had seen at first hand that Zimbabwe’s economy was grinding to a halt. The opposition was quiet and the voice of civil society muted. The talk was of ‘dead hope’. The only thriving business was the charismatic church.

·       ZAF also discussed plans for a demonstration on Tuesday 22nd September against the visit to London by a Zanu PF delegation trying to drum up money. The delegation includes three ministers: Mike Bimha, S K Moyo and Obert Mpofu. There was overwhelming support at the meeting for a protest against the visit by representatives of an illegitimate regime trying to tell the world that all is well in Zimbabwe.   

·       Thanks to Humphrey Dube, Similenkosi Matiwaza, Edson Mulero and Thulani Chagwiza for arriving early to help set up. Thanks to Thulani, Humphrey and Caroline Witts for looking after the front table. Special thanks to Patricia Masamba for mending and washing our long cloth banners: ‘End murder, rape and torture in Zimbabwe’ and ‘No to Mugabe, No to Starvation’. Thanks also to Tinashe Chapata for his help at the end of the Vigil.

 

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: 42 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       Vigil’s monthly Itai Dzamara protest. Saturday 12th September from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark 6 months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       ROHR Central London branch meeting. Saturday 12th September from 12 noon – 2 pm. Venue: The Theodore Bullfrog, 26-30 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.Contact: Fungayi Mabhunu 07907089899, Esther Nyambi 07446210391, Mavis Chisvo 07944612944.

·       ROHR Slough branch general meeting. Saturday 12th September from 11 am – 1 pm. Venue: Upton Lea Community Hall, Wexham Road, Slough SL2 5JW.   Contact Patricia Masamba (Chair) 07708116625, Fungisai Mupandira (Organising Secretary) 07758958803.

·       ROHR Reading branch general meeting and outreach. Saturday 19th September 2015 from 1130 am – 5 pm. Venue: RISC 35-39 London Street, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4PS. For further enquiries contact: Nicodimus Muganhu (Chair) – 07877386792, Shylette Chipangura(Secretary) – 07828929806 and Deborah Harry (Treasurer) – 07748723974.

 ·    ROHR Southampton branch meeting. Saturday 19th September from 1 – 3 pm. Venue: Eastleigh Library, 1st Floor, Swan Centre, Eastleigh, SO50 5SF. Contact: Sally Mutseyami (Chairperson) 07448730581, Grace Rukure (Secretary) 07462103397 and Edward Mukuze (Info & Publicity Officer) 07463975108.

·       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 19th September from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. From the Vigil it’s about a ten 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.

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 19th September from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can meeting. Saturday 26th September at 12 noon. Venue: The Theodore Bullfrog, 26-30 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.

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

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 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/pages/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights/301811392835

·       SW Radio Africa’s website and sound archive is being hosted on www.archive.org. Go to the site and type in swradioafrica which will link you to snapshots of their site over the years and at the top of that page a link to their website where, under podcasts, you will find the audio.

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The total liar – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary, 29th August 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 30 August 2015 12:31

‘There are lies, damned lies and statistics’ goes the saying. Mugabe ticked all these boxes in his State of the Nation Address to Parliament. From his preliminary lie boasting of ‘peace and stability’, to his damned lie about tackling corruption to his ludicrous growth statistics, he was the total liar.

 

We at the Vigil were cheered that the Address was mocked by opposition MPs, who jeered at his fantasy plan to turn around the collapsing economy – a plan which Morgan Tsvangirai said was ‘out of touch with reality’. He urged Mugabe to step down and call early elections, promising he would not enter another unity government. 

 

Zimbabwean economist John Robertson said the State of the Nation Address was clueless and ‘failed to provide solutions to the challenges affecting the economy’. He added ‘’there is no admission that it is the government’s bad policies that have got us to where we are. They talk about revitalising agriculture but they do not talk about restoring the rule of law on land, security of tenure, property rights and funding’ (see: http://www.theindependent.co.zw/2015/08/28/govts-10-point-plan-a-worthless-dud/).

 

The Vigil plans to point this out to any prospective investors who may be prepared to pay £110 to attend a Zanu PF Forum in London next month on investment opportunities. The meeting will be attended by three ministers – Mike Bimha, Minister of Industry and Commerce, S K Moyo, Minister of Economic Planning and Investment Promotion and Dr Obert Mpofu, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Development.

 

We will brief those who attend the Forum about the colourful history of the three ministers and the other Zimbabwean officials there. We certainly have much to tell them about our old friend Mr M’puffed up. Investors will be keen to know, for instance, what bribes they will be expected to pay him. And we are sure they will want to hear from Edmund Makona, CEO of thriving Air Zimbabwe. They might like to ask why he has reinstated the airline’s jailed boss, Grace Pfumbidzayi (see: http://nehandaradio.com/2015/08/23/air-zimbabwe-forced-to-reinstate-jailed-boss/).

 

Supporters may wish to email us their own comments on the three ministers and Mr Makona. Any information they may have about the other delegates would also be welcome (for names see: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/zimbabwe-trade-and-investment-forum-london-uk-tickets-18233317343).

 

Other points

·       British investors may also want to know when the Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo and his deputy Ziyambi Ziyambi will face justice over the bi-election violence in Hurungwe West in June. The government-funded Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission has recommended that they be prosecuted and noted there was ‘disregard of the law when it comes to people who are deemed not allegiant to the ruling party’ (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit-m-chombo-ziyambi-named-in-poll-violence-dailynews-live/).  The investors might also be interested to note that, more than a year after Mugabe ordered bankrupt parastatals to stop paying obscene rewards to their executives, they are still getting way above the salary cap set by the government (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_parastatal-bosses-defy-mugabe-on-salaries-the-zimbabwe-independent/).

·       The open space outside the Zimbabwe Embassy where we hold our vigils is becoming increasingly busy. Crowds, mostly of migrants, congregate for free food handed out by an Islamic charity right after the Vigil. We are encouraging the unpaid Zimbabwe Embassy staff to join the queue.

·       We were pleased to be joined by members of MDC-T Executive in the UK: Tonderai Samanyanga (Chair), Owen Muganda (Secretary) and Sibongile Sihwa (Vice Chair).

·       Thanks to those who came early to help set up: Patricia Masamba, Esther Nyambi, Joseph Chivayo, Pearl Shambare, Ashley Mhako, Nobukhosi Moyo, Similenkosi Matiwaza, Muchineripi Chigwedere, Ali Ansar, Ephraim Tapa and Fungayi Mabhunu. Thanks to Patricia and Esther 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: 51 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       Journeys Festival, Leicester. Sunday 30th and Monday 31st August. Venue: Orton Square, Cultural Quarter, Leicester LE1 1SB. Zimbabwean performers: the band Harare which includes Vigil supporter Kuduashe Matimba (formerly of the Bundu Boys) at 12 noon on Sunday and the Zimbabwe Association Choir at 11 am on Monday,

·       ROHR Executive Meeting: Saturday 5th September at 12 noon. 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 5th September from 6.15 pm. From the Vigil it’s about a ten 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.

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 5th September from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Vigil’s Monthly Itai Dzamara Protest. Saturday 12th September from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark 6 months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can meeting. Saturday 26th September at 12 noon. Venue: The Theodore Bullfrog, 26-30 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.

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

·       Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 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.co/pages/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights/301811392835

·       SW Radio Africa’s website and sound archive is being hosted on www.archive.org. Go to the site and type in swradioafrica which will link you to snapshots of their site over the years and at the top of that page a link to their website where, under podcasts, you will find the audio.

 
Let them eat ice cream – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary, 22nd August 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 23 August 2015 14:00

All the reports we get at the Vigil suggest that the wheels are coming off Zimbabwe. This week we were sent several emails which in different ways graphically show how bad things are becoming.

 

‘We live in a country with absolutely no rule of law’, said one correspondent. ‘There is no money and everyone, not only government, is desperate to find funds. Corruption and bribery are a way of life. They are ingrained and will be hard to get rid of. We survive in hope!’

 

Our correspondent, a veterinarian, is worried that the desperate scramble for money poses a threat to wildlife. Commenting on reports that Chinese staff have replaced locals at Hwange Park, he said it was difficult to get correct information. ‘We know that anti-poaching activities in Matusadona have been stopped and we know baby elephants have been moved to China. We think ivory and rhino horn are also going as well as body parts from lions and other animals which have value in China and other Asian countries.’ He added ‘the huge reaction to the killing of the lion Cecil is a great way to cover up what is going on’.

 

Another message to the Vigil came from a Christian charity working in Zimbabwe, which is supported by us. ‘Zimbabwe is not the place for an easy life today’. It says. ‘With the economy in tailspin, businesses closing and workers being laid off in increasing numbers, and with a quarter of the population forced to work outside the country in order to keep their families alive, it comes as no surprise to learn that the unemployment rate is a staggering 90 per cent.  And if life is difficult even for the few in employment, one can but wonder how the rest manage to get by.’ (See: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/712-zimbabwe-alert--relentlessly-pushing-zimbabwes-poor-towards-the-edge).

 

The third danger signal for us came in the latest article by economist and MDC T MP Eddie Cross, who has managed to be optimistic whatever the setbacks – until now. He said real hunger and deprivation is now common in all rural districts. ‘I estimate that up to 5000 people a day are now crossing our southern borders into South Africa – more than 40 000 a week or 2 million people this year. Some will return but the majority will stay and seek new lives. Can South Africa take such an additional burden at this time? I think not.’ (See: http://www.thezimbabwean.co/2015/08/the-deepening-crisis-in-zimbabwe/).

 

As the axles gouge the roads, Dr Grace has opened a new factory selling her dairy products, including ice cream. MDC spokesman Obert Gutu spoke of her extravagant display of wealth in a sea of poverty and said it was a clear sign that the Zanu PF regime was completely out of touch with the people

 

Other Points

·       We were visited by a Zimbabwean-born academic from Seattle University who asked for our help with his research on experiences when returning home to Zimbabwe and thoughts on reconciliation.

·       Zimbabwean performers, including Vigil supporters, are taking part in the Journeys Festival in Leicester next weekend. See ‘Events and Notices’ for details.

·       Thanks to those who arrived early to help set up: Eunice Mucherechedzo, Esther Nyambi, Humphrey Dube, Nqobizitha Moyo, Mary Muteyerwa, Bridget Mupotsa and Fungayi Mabhunu. Thanks to Eunice and Esther 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: 35 signed the register.

 

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can meeting. Saturday 29thAugust July at 12 noon. Venue: The Theodore Bullfrog, 26-30 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.

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

·       Journeys Festival, Leicester. Sunday 30th and Monday 31st August. Venue: Orton Square, Cultural Quarter, Leicester LE1 1SB. Zimbabwean performers: the band Harare which includes Vigil supporter Kuduashe Matimba (formerly of the Bundu Boys) at 12 noon on Sunday and the Zimbabwe Association Choir at 11 am on Monday,

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 5th September from 6.15 pm. From the Vigil it’s about a ten 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.

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 5th September from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Vigil’s Monthly Itai Dzamara Protest. Saturday 12th September from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark 6 months since Dzamara’s abduction by intelligence agents.

·       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 Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

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

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

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

SW Radio Africa’s website and sound archive is being hosted on www.archive.org. Go to the site and type in swradioafrica which will link you to snapshots of their site over the years and at the top of that page a link to their website where, under podcasts, you will find the audio.
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Produce all skulls – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 15th August 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 16 August 2015 10:57

Photolink: https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/20593480542/sizes/m/

 

Sacked information minister Jonathan Moyo simply can’t get out of propaganda mode. From his lowly perch as just one of the education ministers, Moyo is reduced to tweeting that the Zanu PF government can’t concentrate on turning around the economy before the repatriation of the remains of First Chimurenga heroes from foreign museums (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit-m-nehandas-skull-first-before-economy-newsday-zimbabwe/).

 

The British government last year invited Zimbabwe to send experts for discussions in London on the return of any Zimbabwean human remains held in British museums. But historians say it is highly unlikely these include the skulls of any 19th century Zimbabwean freedom fighters (see UK Times story on our campaigns page: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/710-mugabe-demands-return-of-freedom-fighters-skulls).

 

So it could be a long search – which means, according to Moyo, farewell to any hopes of the economy receiving any attention for some time, though he did promise that when the government does finally get around to the matter the economy would bounce back ‘big time on the back of the irreversible indigenisation and empowerment bedrock’. The Vigil can’t wait. We would love to bounce back home.

 

Moyo’s egregious remarks followed Mugabe’s usual crazy bluster at Zanu PF’s Heroes’ Day rally in Harare at which he accused Britain of displaying the beheaded skulls in a ‘history museum’.

 

Mugabe went on to extol the achievements of ZimAsset, which he maintained was ‘certainly yielding fruits’. He didn’t mention the 2.2 million jobs he is producing since the last elections, but said the government was delivering 313,368 urban housing units and serviced stands by December 2018 . . . (see: http://www.newsdzezimbabwe.co.uk/2015/08/as-foreign-investment-dries-up-mugabe.html).

 

The Vigil advises prospective foreign investors to examine closely what they are dealing with. They might note the outcome of the long negotiations with the Indian conglomerate Essar to revive Zisco Steel. A month ago industry minister Mike Bimha insisted that the troubled $750 million deal was going ahead. Now he has admitted it is dead (see: http://www.thezimbabwean.co/2015/08/bimha-makes-u-turn-on-zisco/). Perhaps the government could ask Essar to build 313,368 urban housing units instead.

 

The Vigil managed to capture pictures of Mugabe visiting the British Museum in search of skulls. He was accompanied by his pet lion Rhodes perching on his shoulder. The museum said it didn’t have the skulls he was looking for but it would no doubt welcome his own as soon as possible for display in the dinosaur room. For our part, we urge Zanu PF to expand its search for skulls to include the 20,000 victims of Gukurahundi still haunting us today. And by the way where is Itai Dzamara?

 

Other points

·       Thanks to Fungayi Mabhunu for playing the role of Mugabe in our mask and to Tendai Chadehumbe for accompanying him to the British Museum during the Vigil. Thanks to Patricial Masamba for looking after the Vigil in the absence of Mugabe and for being on the front table throughout the Vigil together with Sukoluhle Sibanda and Ivy Dangerembizi. Thanks also to those who arrived early to help set up: Mary Muteyerwa, Thulani and Percy Chagwiza, Sukoluhle, Ivy and Fungayi.

·       Another weekday protest about Itai Dzamara’s abduction by the CIO five months ago is taking place on Tuesday 18th August. Meet at 10.30 am at McDonalds, Charing Cross for the protest outside the Embassy at 11 am.

·       It is with some relief we greet the end of Mugabe’s time as SADC Chair. For a look at where he has taken the bankrupt organisation, see, for instance: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_sadc-tenure-exposes-mugabes-fading-legacy-the-zimbabwe-independent/.

 

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:

·       Itai Dzamara Protest, Tuesday 18th August. Meet at 10.30 am at McDonalds, Charing Cross for the protest outside the Embassy at 11 am. For more information, contact: Lazarus Matiyenga 07793939444, Danny Kadiki 07718056631.

·       ROHR Birmingham summer barbecue fundraiser. Saturday 22nd August from 2 – 9 pm. Venue: Malaika House, 81 George Street, Lozells, Birmingham B19 1NS. Contact Tino 07463202078, Thandie 07503512308, Chamu 07832927609.              

·       Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 22nd August from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.

·       Zimbabwe Yes We Can meeting. Saturday 29thAugust July at 12 noon. Venue: The Theodore Bullfrog, 26-30 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6HL.

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

·       Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 5th September from 6.15 pm. 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.

·       Vigil’s Monthly Itai Dzamara Protest. Saturday 12th September from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London. The protest is to mark 6 months since Dzamara’s abduction by the CIO.

·       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 Vigil Highlights 2014 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/642-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2014. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2014 Highlights page.

·       Facebook pages:

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

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

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

·       SW Radio Africa’s website and sound archive is being hosted on www.archive.org. Go to the site and type in swradioafrica which will link you to snapshots of their site over the years and at the top of that page a link to their website where, under podcasts, you will find the audio.

 
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