Zimbabwe Vigil’s 7th Anniversary – 10th October 2009 PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 11 October 2009 20:03

President Mugabe and first lady ‘Shopwell’ Grace were not at all happy with their Harrods experience. Two members of the Vigil impersonating the presidential couple went to this puffed-up shop to illustrate what will happen if the targeted sanctions against Mugabe and his cronies are lifted as demanded by Zimbabwe’s neighbours.  

After learning about our proposed shopping spree, a pompous Harrods PR flunky phoned us and threatened to put Attorney-General Tomana on our case. ‘You can’t come in’, she said. ‘Can we take pictures outside?’ we asked. ‘No it’s out of the question’ Harrods replied, sensitive as always to the susceptibilities of their kleptocratic clients.  Well, despite Harrods’ hoity-toity response, Mugabe and Shopwell marched boldly into the bazaar.  Among the media to capture the moment was an AFP photographer rewarded by us with a Zim$100 trillion note.  

Nevertheless President Mugabe (Fungayi Mabhunu) and his consort (Gugu Tutani) have decided in future to take their custom next door to Harvey Nichols. 

Another of Zimbabwe’s celebrated 15-digit notes was given to Geoffrey Van Orden, Member of the European Parliament for Eastern England, who came to the Vigil to support us on our 7th anniversary together with his wife Fanny and daughters Rose and Selina.   They appeared to have a great time. 

Mr Van Orden accepted our petition to hand over to the European Union calling for punitive action against SADC because of its failure to honour its commitment to ensure that the global political agreement is implemented. The petition was handed to him by President Mugabe who arrived with Shopwell by rickshaw after their Harrods expedition. Mr Van Orden called on President Mugabe to stand aside and allow peace and prosperity in Zimbabwe through free and fair internationally-monitored elections.

To mark the Vigil’s 7th anniversary we all gathered afterwards at a local pub to watch a rough cut of a film about Zimbabwe being made by David Adelstein, which features the Vigil.  Thanks to Josephine Zhuga who brought a beautiful cake for the Vigil’s anniversary which was much enjoyed by all. 

Dumi Tutani and Luka Phiri who undertook a 55-mile sponsored walk for the Zimbabwean tumour girl, Tare, reminded us that she was operated on today in London.  Our thoughts and prayers are with her and all the other suffering Zimbabweans who can’t access this sort of treatment.  Betty Makoni, founder of Girl Child Network, who recently visited the Vigil to talk about Tare, has been nominated as one of CNN’s top ten heroes of 2009.  Please see events and notices for how you can vote for her. 

For latest Vigil pictures check: 

FOR THE RECORD:  268 signed the register. 

·         ROHR Manchester general meeting. Saturday 17th October from 2 – 5 pm. Venue: The Salvation Army Citadel, 71 Grosvenor Street, Manchester M13 9UB. Substantive committee to be elected. ROHR President and ROHR UK
executive present. Contact: Fungai Chikoore 07876060929, Jeremiah Murefu 07881452495 / 07536677154, Tsitsi Jonas 07884254184, Fenny Nyatsanza 07886310005 or P Mapfumo 07915926323 / 07932216070.
·         ROHR Leicester relaunch meeting. Saturday 24th October. Venue: Bishop Street Methodist Church,10 Bishop Street, Leicester LE 1 6AF. ROHR President and UK Executive present. Speakers: Rev Jill Marsh (Methodist Church), Celia Fisher (Leicester Aids Support Services). Contact: Dennis Sibanda 07901742649, Dr N Masamvi 07825525834, L Maposa 07837788807, F Mzemba 07932449899, G Mutimukulu 07508029001, N Maziso
07732545514, A Mutambira 07768610423 or P Mapfumo 07915926323 / 07932216070
·         ROHR West Bromwich general meeting. Saturday 31st October from 1.30 – 5.30 pm. Venue: St Peters Church Hall, Whitehall Road, West Bromwich B70 0HF. ROHR Executive and a well-known lawyer present. Contact Pamela Dunduru 07958386718, Diana Mtendereki 07768682961, Peter Nkomo 07817096594 or P Mapfumo 07915926323 / 0793221607
·         Zimbabwe Association’s Women’s Weekly Drop-in Centre. Fridays 10.30 am – 4 pm. Venue: The 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).
·         From Liberator to Dictator by Mike Auret. This is a personal account of the unravelling of Zimbabwe, written by an insider who was prepared to keep faith with Robert Mugabe until it was almost too late. Michael Auret served for many years on Zimbabwe's respected Catholic Commission of Justice and Peace, which worked tirelessly to defend human rights in that country. In this memoir, he traces his involvement in the politics of his country, from his days as an opposition MP in Ian Smith's Rhodesia
to his involvement with the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) and his election as MP for Harare Central in the brutal election of 2000. 
·         Strategic Internship for Zimbabweans organised by Citizens for Sanctuary which is trying to secure work placements for qualified Zimbabweans with refugee status or asylum seekers. For  information: or contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
·         Vote for Betty Makoni of Girl Child Network as one of CNN’s top ten heroes of 2009 via this link: 


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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.