Saturday, July 02, 2011

Who should we vote for?

Who should we vote for?
By The Post
Sat 02 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

The fate of our people, the destiny of our country is determined to a substantial extent by the political leaders we elect.

Whether our nation will have good or bad laws, an upright or inefficient administration depends on how we vote, on whom we decide to vote for. Therefore, this imperative duty must be fulfilled carefully and we must choose wisely people who will take the direction of the civil affairs of our country.

And the love of our country urges us to act accordingly in all justice and charity. We should be conscious of the crucial role each one of us as citizens of this country should play in choosing the leaders who will create the Zambia we want to live in.

The observations made by Gilbert Chisenga, a former Commonwealth youth representative for Zambia, on how we should choose our representatives deserves all our favourable consideration. We agree with Gilbert’s suggestion that we should subject our elected leaders to political audit.

And we should ask: “Did they perform according to their political promises?” And as Gilbert concludes, "if they didn’t perform, they shouldn’t be going back to us to ask for votes. Those who performed, if they are going to convince us they did well, then they deserve another term of office”.

We should use our votes for the good of Zambia, as opposed to the good of a particular political party, group or individual. We should vote for candidates who have proved themselves accountable to the electorate for the common good. We should choose representatives who are courageous in defending truth and justice for all, who are completely honest in fulfilling public and private responsibilities. And when the day for voting comes, let us use our votes to make sure that the right person is elected.

State House and Parliament should not have people who let us down morally and otherwise. Let us vote according to our conscience, in accordance with the highest human values without allowing ourselves to be pressured or dictated to by godfathers, by bribes, threats and self-interest.

Our right to vote will only bear positive fruits for our country when we choose good leaders for presidency and for membership of Parliament and councils. We have the right to choose those who will represent us, and we must do our duty as citizens by choosing people who will serve the country with justice towards all; people who respect the rights of others and public property, people who are mindful about the plight of the poor.

Good elections require intelligent and responsible participation of all citizens who have registered to vote. We therefore have to have the capacity to evaluate our candidates. Those who offer themselves for re-election ought to be evaluated against the record of what they have or have not achieved. As Gilbert has already pointed out, we should ask: did they fulfil their promises? Did they offer quality service to all the people and not only to their relatives and friends and cadres? Were they available to listen to the concerns of the people and were they selfless in responding to the needs of all, especially the poor? We will have to review the performance of our present representatives, weigh them in the balance of truth, justice and unselfish service, and, if we find them wanting, reject them and elect others in their place.

Those who have not yet held office should be carefully evaluated in terms of their competence and their reputation for honesty and selfless dedication to the common good. We should evaluate their courage to speak out the truth, concern for social justice, desire to work for the common good instead of self-enrichment, disposition to use power for service, especially service of the poor and the underprivileged, openness to dialogue, good moral standing, transparency and accountability to the electorate.

Let’s use our vote to help eliminate the unworthy and improve the quality of the political leadership of our country. Let’s choose only candidates who are good for the country and let’s do so strictly according to the good we think they can do.

Let us not forget that election time is a time to vote for honest, courageous, hardworking and selfless leaders. It is an opportune time to review our past in order to prepare for better political choices for the future.

The proper role of political leaders is to serve the citizens. And they do this by creating opportunities that benefit all citizens without discrimination. All Zambians should be concerned with the way political leaders lead them and administer public goods. That is why elections are very important.

Don’t vote for leaders who threaten you with development sanctions if you voted for their opponents or competitors. We must vote wisely and only for people known for their honesty, ability and concern for the welfare of all. Let us not forget that “where there is no wise guidance, the people fall” (Proverbs 11:14). Let those we elect to rule do so with care. And only those who can do so with care deserve our votes. Let’s vote only for leaders who are willing to listen to the people, respect the people and work for the welfare of all the people; leaders who are willing to fight against injustice and to devote themselves to the welfare of all.

We should not take the choice of leaders lightly. Good leaders can do a lot to increase the quality of life in our country. Equally, bad leaders can do a lot of damage to our country and to our lives. Let’s vote for people who will bring pride to our nation and ensure economic prosperity and social justice and ensure that our children can bring up their children with a future to look forward to. Let us vote for people who can protect the ordinary people against the abuse of power. Let us vote for people who can take away the despair of our people and give them hope; people who will not allow the resources of this country to benefit just a few. Let us vote for people who will strengthen our people’s confidence in democracy and the rule of law, the nobility of the human soul and sustain all our hopes for a glorious life for all.



Soli association supports Masebo

Soli association supports Masebo
By Patson Chilemba
Sat 02 July 2011, 04:02 CAT

THE Soli Cultural Association has vowed to defend Sylvia Masebo and chieftainess Nkomeshya following the constant attacks and harassment on them by President Rupiah Banda and the MMD.

In a press statement dated June, 30, 2011, on behalf of the Soli Cultural Association, association chairman Charles Mwambi warned those attacking Chongwe member of parliament Masebo to leave her alone. He said the Solis were ready to sell their chickens in order to defend Masebo.

Mwambi said this follows recent numerous attacks from high ranking MMD officials and their sponsored agents, as a result of Masebo’s refusal to re-contest the Chongwe seat on the MMD ticket.
“We the association have noted with regret the constant attacks from MMD and their sponsored agents who have continued issuing unwarranted attacks on Hon Masebo. We are very unhappy about her harassment by the Head of State and his agents,” Mwambi stated.

“We have also noted with extreme regret that our Royal Highness Senior Chieftainess Nkomeshya Mukamambo II has also come under attack by the same sponsored agents just because she observed that Chongwe and Kafue districts have lagged behind in terms of development despite being less that 50 kilometres from the national treasury.”

Mwambi stated that the association would also mobilise all its members to rally behind chieftainess Nkomeshya and Masebo for hardworking and good leadership.

“We urge Hon Masebo to exercise her right to choose a political party of her own choice and we shall rally behind her come rain, come sun shine. We shall sell our village chickens just to support Hon Masebo,” stated Mwambi.

“This is because we know that Ms Masebo is a hard worker and very committed to the cause of the people of Chongwe and the traditional leadership.”

Masebo on Monday announced her resignation from the MMD following President Banda’s continued hatred and undemocratic tendencies against her.

The MMD had earlier suspended Masebo, who was the party’s chairperson for women affairs. Masebo had refused to re-contest her seat on the ruling party’s ticket.

Labels: , ,


Mpezeni okays UTH pictures with Sata

Mpezeni okays UTH pictures with Sata
By Patson Chilemba
Sat 02 July 2011, 04:01 CAT

PARAMOUNT chief Mpezeni says there was nothing untraditional in Michael Sata’s visit to him when he was admitted to the University Teaching Hospital.

Reacting to attacks on PF leader Sata in the state-owned and government-controlled Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC), Times of Zambia and Zambia Daily Mail that it was untraditional for him to have carried photographers when he visited Mpezeni at UTH, Mpezeni’s cousin George Zulu said the government media misrepresented facts.

“The visit was arranged between paramount chief Mpezeni and president Sata. There was nothing untraditional where people are saying it was not traditional to have brought those pictures in the paper The Post,” said Zulu who was by the chief’s bedside when Sata visited.

“There was nothing untraditional about those pictures. Paramount chief Mpezeni of the Ngoni of Eastern Province wanted to show that the University Teaching Hospital is just a good hospital as those in South Africa, India and elsewhere. And showing leadership is what he did to show that even paramount chief Mpezeni, paramount chief Chitimukulu of the Bembas go to the same hospital.”

Zulu said Mpezeni was grateful that Sata visited him when he was admitted to the hospital.

“He is saying muyako nipamabvuto A friend in need is a friend indeed. All those who are claiming this or the other, none of them visited him in hospital. He wants to emphasise love. What Sata did was expression of love for a fellow man,” he said.

Zulu said the nation should promote the tradition of loving and visiting those in hospital.

He said the doctors at UTH were as good as any other.

“His short stay there was exciting because those Tonga nurses and Bembas were smiling throughout that stay,” Zulu said.

And speaking in his own capacity, Zulu wondered what was untraditional in visiting the sick.

He said the Ngoni tradition was about doing things transparently, the reason Ngonis did not mask their faces when they performed their traditional dances.

“I was hurt when the Times of Zambia referred to inkosi yama nkosi king of kings, Mpezeni as senior chief. Maybe there is a senior chief Mpezeni calling himself senior chief Mpezeni. But what we Ngonis know is only one inkosi yama nkosi, Mpezeni. This time we have Mpezeni 4,” Zulu said.

He said The Post and other newspapers and television stations had carried pictures of Chitimukulu and Dr Kenneth Kaunda before in the same UTH.

Zulu said UTH was a public institution where citizens and leaders alike went to be attended to and journalists were free to go there.

He said Mpezeni was a public figure, who was admitted in a public hospital.

“You can’t hide him. So we want all those who are saying Sata did not act to tradition to look back at our Ngoni tradition. Nsengas have their tradition, if they don’t want to be seen. We have got 73 tribes in this country, all following different traditions. But we must at the end remain as one, accept, respect each other’s traditions,” said Zulu.

The state-owned and government-controlled media have been condemning Sata for having carried along a Post photographer when he recently visited Mpezeni who has since been discharged from UTH.

The Post’s edition of June 29, 2011 carried a front page picture of Mpezeni in a hospital bed with Sata at his bedside.

Labels: ,


Mumbi lambastes timing of student allowances raise

Mumbi lambastes timing of student allowances raise
By Kombe Chimpinde
Sat 02 July 2011, 04:01 CAT

It is very foolish for Dora Siliya and President Rupiah Banda to think that increasing allowances will hoodwink students into voting for MMD, says a parliamentarian. And UNZALARU says that the decision by the government to increase students’ allowances is a political gimmick.

Mumbi Phiri, who is member of parliament for Munali Constituency where the University of Zambia falls, said it was MMD’s tired and failed practice of raising various allowances for students in an election year.

“Government only increases allowances of students, only when there are elections. As the minister admittedly said, the last increment was in 2008,” said Phiri in an interview.

“We are all aware that 2008 was a year of elections, the other one was done in 2001 and 2006. Those are all election years. So President Banda and Dora Siliya should not think we are in the old Germany where Hitler (Adolf) was using propaganda to win support.”

Mumbi said Zambians and students in particular, were now aware of the MMDs’ trickery and that they would not fall them.

“Now even people in far-flung areas are educated and aware. They know the problems obtaining in the country so nobody can be fooled,” Phiri said.

And Phiri expressed disgust at a comment made by Siliya that parents must plan their families to avoid having children they could not afford to take care of. Siliya said this when she toured the Copperbelt University recently where she made the announcements on the meal, book and project allowances for students at the two biggest learning institutions in the country.

“It’s a very big insult for Dora (Siliya) to come out and start telling Zambians to plan their families. Is it her burden if people have 10 children? She (Dora) should just pray that God gives her a husband who can give her more children if she so wishes,” Phiri said.

“Let her not interfere in other people’s families. We have very educated ministers who have a lot of children in her Cabinet. Is there anything wrong with that? Can we (Zambians) say they do not know how to plan?”

She warned Dora to desist from insulting the integrity of Zambians.

“It’s a shame that we have women with such behaviours when the country is fighting for 30 per cent women representation in positions of decision making,” said Phiri.

University of Zambia Lecturers and Researchers Union (UNZALARU) secretary general Jason Mwanza said that the move to selectively address the challenges at the institution was politically motivated.

“They (MMD government) want to gain political mileage. They want to be seen to be doing good but as a government they should be seen to be doing good at all times. Government has responsibilities over its citizens and these should be constant without variations,” Mwanza said.

“The past four or five years the University has not had the liberty to negotiate freely for emoluments and gratuities. We have always had a wage gap. For instance the past two years, the budget for the universities has not been increased.”

He complained that there were no indications of a likelihood of government adjusting their benefits.

“This is a potential receipt for anarchy. We do appreciate that allowances for students have increased and particularly the project allowances. The students indeed have had hardships but you see the hand to assist has come too late and at an awkward time, when the needs of their parents, the lecturers are not being addressed,” said Mwanza.

Labels: , , , ,


Kazabu quits UPND, joins PF

Kazabu quits UPND, joins PF
By George Chellah
Sat 02 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

LUXON Kazabu has resigned from the UPND and applied to stand in Nkana Constituency on the PF ticket. In a letter dated June 24, 2011 to the UPND secretary general, Kazabu, who is also party chairman for education, science and technology stated that he had resigned purely on principle and conviction.

“It is with deep regret that I have to inform you that after consultations with my family, friends and other people of good will and purely on a point of principle and conviction, I have decided to resign from the party with immediate effect,” Kazabu stated.

“You will recall that when I joined UPND on 30th October 2009, I publicly stated that I had stayed out of party politics for quite some time because of the fragmentation of the opposition. I further stated that following the formation of a pact between the Patriotic Front (PF) and the party I had decided to return to active politics.”

He stated that PF and UPND were and are still undoubtedly the biggest opposition parties in the country.

“I firmly believed then and still believe that working together, the two could offer a meaningful challenge to the ruling party in competing for political power and offering our people an alternative governing style,” Kazabu stated.

“Against the above background, the collapse of the pact is at variance with my conviction and expectations. Further, I do not agree with the alternative path, which the party has chosen to take in its resolve to participate in the forthcoming general elections, hence my decision to leave.”

Kazabu, who is also former Kitwe mayor thanked UPND president Hakainde Hichilema, the NEC and the National Management Committee (NMC) for giving him an opportunity to be part of the top leadership team as chairman for education, science and technology.

“I shall remain indebted for many years to come. Further, I shall treasure both the good and challenging times that we spent together during the short period of my membership. To the general membership of the party, I thank them for their support,” Kazabu stated.

“To my old and close friends, Hon Ackson Sejani and Hon Request Muntanga, I apologise upfront if they feel let down by the decision which I have made. It is my prayer and hope that our friendship and warm relations will live forever.”

And Kazabu has applied for adoption on the PF ticket in Nkana Constituency.

In his letter to the constituency secretary dated June 29, 2011, Kazabu wrote: “I write to apply for adoption as a parliamentary candidate in Nkana constituency on the Patriotic Front ticket in the forthcoming tripartite elections. For personal, academic, professional, work experience, community and business service and apolitical involvement details, I have enclosed my curriculum vitae. I trust that the party will give my application its serious and favourable consideration.”

Hichilema was recently quoted saying that the UPND was stronger than PF, which he claimed had lost popularity, especially on the Copperbelt.

Labels: , ,


Chisenga calls for leadership audit

Chisenga calls for leadership audit
By Christopher Miti in Chipata
Sat 02 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

Elected leaders should be subjected to political audit this year, says former Commonwealth youth representative for Zambia Gilbert Chisenga. In an interview on Monday, Chisenga said there was need for Zambians to reflect on the performance of the last parliament which adjourned sine die on Friday.

“Parliament adjourned sine die on Friday, what is the meaning of that to us people of Zambia? This is the time that we should reflect on the performance of that parliament and the performance of individual members of parliament whom we elected in 2006. We have to make sure that we subject them to a political audit. If they didn’t perform they shouldn’t be coming back to us to ask for votes,” Chisenga said.

He said people were aware that the parliament which adjourned on Friday tabled crucial and critical national issues.

“Our interest is to see how our representatives debated and voted in that parliament. For example, how did they vote on the increase of their emoluments? How did they vote on the removal of article 37 from the Anti-Corruption Commission Act? How did they behave when they went to the NCC? How did they vote when they tabled that Constitutional bill? So we can politically audit these people on these lines,” Chisenga said.

He urged political parties to ensure that they field credible candidates.

Chisenga said the Zambian people had in the past five years been subjected to mediocre leaders.

“You cannot go to the council and your only role is to second things you don’t understand. You can’t go to parliament and for five years you just finish mineral water. We want candidates who are going to speak on behalf of the voiceless and on behalf of the marginalized, who are going to share the challenges that the people of Zambia face every day,” he said.

Chisenga appealed to political parties to consider adopting young people and women to bridge the generation gap that currently existed in Parliament and at local government level.



ZICA adopts three-tier financial reporting frameworks

ZICA adopts three-tier financial reporting frameworks
By Kabanda Chulu in Kitwe
Fri 01 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

ZICA has adopted a moderate three-tier financial reporting frameworks to enable SMEs apply accounting standards suitable to meet their needs and capabilities. It is understood that the use of full International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) by all entities posed a lot of challenges to small medium enterprises (SMEs) because they are huge in terms of disclosures required and their high rate of revisions.

During the IFRS for SMEs workshop in Kitwe, Zambia Institute of Chartered Accountants (ZICA) chief executive officer Hapenga Kabeta said requirements under the three tier financial reporting framework would entail listed or public interest entities to apply full IFRS. He said economically significant entities (turnover above K20 billion) would apply IFRS for SMEs while small entities (turnover less than K20 billion) would apply the Zambian financial standard for SMEs.

He explained that ZICA in 2005 adopted the use of IFRS without modifications for all entities regardless of their size in Zambia.

“Full IFRS was designed for entities whose securities were traded on the stock exchange and those with public interest hence the use of full IFRS by all entities poses challenges to SMEs not only in Zambia but across the globe, hence ZICA has made a decision to develop a local standard for micro entities which we envisage will reduce the reporting burden on SMEs,” said Kabeta, in a speech read by ZICA director of standards and regulation Chansa Chiteba.

Labels: ,


Crisis in Greece to affect kwacha

Crisis in Greece to affect kwacha
By Gift Chanda
Fri 01 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

UNCERTAINTIES in the Greek economy will lead to volatility in the Zambian financial market, says a South African business consultant. Ebrahim Takolia, an advisor at Deloitte Consulting firm, said the local financial markets are expected to be negatively impacted with what was happening in Greece.

He said the kwacha would experience strong volatility as long as the “crisis” in Greece is not resolved. The kwacha yesterday traded at US $4,853 and US $4,873 for bid and offer respectively.

“Volatility in the kwacha-dollar exchange rates is expected to continue because of what is happening on the global arena. What is happening in Greece will continue to affect other counties like the US and this will spill to Zambia too,” he said on Wednesday during the Access Bank organised Economic Review and Trade Finance seminar.

Meanwhile, finance minister Dr Situmbeko Musokotwana said Zambia would attain the projected inflation rate this year contrary to fears by the Bank of Zambia.

He said the country’s record harvest should ease inflation.

The country’s headline consumer inflation edged up in May after easing in April on a slight food price increase.

Annual inflation quickened to 8.9 per cent in May from 8.8 per cent in April.

The government has an inflation target of seven per cent by the end of the year but the central bank recently expressed fears on attaining the target.

They said the preliminary assessment indicate that there are challenges in meeting the target.
“I do not expect much increment in inflation rate because we have plenty of food,” Dr Musokotwane said.

“We are confident that we will get the targeted inflation rate or we will come close to it.”

Dr Musokotwane further dispelled fears of farmers not benefiting from the much celebrated record maize harvest.

He said maize exports into neighbouring countries were going to increase and farmers would benefit.
“Currently we are exporting to Congo DR, I think Namibia also is interested, the Kenyans are also short of maize this year so they are all looking at us for exports,” said Dr Musokotwane.

Zambia has struggled to export maize to neighboring markets partly because its maize is expensive compared to other countries in the region.

Key stakeholders have called on the government to implement measures that would reduce the cost of producing maize.

Labels: , ,


KCM completes sinking phase of KDMP’s shaft 4

KCM completes sinking phase of KDMP’s shaft 4
By Chiwoyu Sinyangwe
Fri 01 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

KONKOLA Copper Mines says it has completed the sinking phase for the new shaft 4 at its flagship Konkola Deep Mining Project. This is one of the major milestones in the overall KDMP project that is expected to lift total finished copper production to more than 400,000 tonnes in the next few years. The shaft has been sunk to a depth of 1,505 metres in Zambia’s Chililabombwe border town.

Vedanta Resources Group chief executive officer Mahendra Singh Mehta said during the last blast which marked the completion of the sinking phase for the shaft to 1,505 metres that the occasion marked a remarkable accomplishment for KCM and Zambia.

“This is a major milestone in the mine's history and we are very excited about the project,” Mehta said.

With the sinking completed, the next phase of the project will be the equipping of the shaft.

KCM Jeyakumar Janakaraj said Vedanta Resources had shown unrelenting commitment to continue with the execution of the project even in challenging times when the copper prices had slumped.

The implementation of KDMP project continued during recent global economic crisis when several mining companies suspended their projects.

KDMP general manager Raj Kulkarni said the project, which had been on the drawing board for several decades, had culminated into the first major shaft to be sunk since Zambia’s independence in 1964.

The shaft 4 is Zambia’s deepest and has the largest hoisting capacity in southern Africa. Its sinking was concluded after all 22 project milestones were achieved on schedule.

Eugene Erasmus, the chairman for GLTA contractor company, described the sinking of the shaft during the blasting ceremony as a challenging feat, which has only been accomplished due to a strong partnership his company has created with KCM and a focus by the KCM management to foster teamwork.

Labels: , ,


Expert regrets China’s hold on terms of development

Expert regrets China’s hold on terms of development
By Chiwoyu Sinyangwe
Thu 30 June 2011, 04:00 CAT

MULTI-Facility Economic Zones are going to increase resentment and worsen strained relations between the Chinese and local people if they are not properly managed, says an expert at Sino-Africa relationship.

Nitesh Dullabh of the Johannesburg-based Beijing Axis said it was regrettable that China at the moment was dictating the terms of development of industrial parks – the Multi-Facility Economic Zones (MFEZs).

Dullabh said apart from China setting up MFEZs to improve its logistics chain and transportation modes, it was also owning these infrastructure modes as it increases its hegemony on the continent.

Dullabh said, “Owing to growing perception that MFEZs were for Chinese, you would see resentments, continuous infighting, FDI Foreign Direct Investments levels decreasing…I see more conflicts in the region. We need to have a greater say, greater input in these special economic zones, we need to dictate part of the agenda in terms of what are some of the manufacturing processes that need to take place, ‘how do we manage’ the logistics chain.”

Zambia is currently touting three Chinese inspired and dominated industrial parks with Chambishi MFEZ being pioneered by Zambia-China Economic and Trade Cooperation Zone, the first overseas economic and trade cooperation zone declared by the Chinese government to be established in Africa.

About US $1 billion is already committed investments for the Chambishi MFEZ which frequently produces violent and near fatal relationships between Chinese bosses and Zambian workers.

Chambishi MFEZ is dominated by Chinese companies of the 14 firms licenced in the tax-free zone meant to boost value-addition to raw copper produced.

Dullabh said there was currently a disconnection between what China could offer and what Africa needed, a situation he said could be improved through better level of communication coordination.

He said the continued trend where China was plundering Africa’s natural resources while dumping its manufactured goods on the continent would have long-term negative impact on Africa.

“The large-scale impact is that there will not be much new employment growth in Africa, you would see a continuous need for Africa to buy from China, China would only get involved in the extractive industry without beneficiation,” he said.

China is Zambia’s fastest source of FDI, with Chinese investments currently estimated at US $2 billion, while projections point to a surge to US $3 billion in the next two years.

Dullabh said China’s strong hunger for Africa’s natural resources gave impetus for African governments to start dictating the terms under which they trade with Chinese.

“Some countries getting involved in telling China what they needed, we need to be more assertive in saying this is the type of investments we need, be it equipment or diversified area, not just mining,” said Dullabh.

Labels: ,


(NEWZIMBABWE) Civil servants get pay hike

Civil servants get pay hike
01/07/2011 00:00:00
by Owen Gagare I NewsDay

THE government on Friday awarded civil servants a salary increment which will see a US$31 rise in the basic salary of the lowest-earning employee.

The least-paid government worker will now get a basic salary of US$159, up from US$128, while housing allowance has been pegged at US$50 from US$30 and transport allowance at US$44 from US$28, bringing the total package to US$253, which is half of the poverty datum line figure currently pegged at US$502.

President Robert Mugabe promised back in April that the lowest paid government worker would take home a minimum of US$251 starting in June, but Finance Minister Tendai Biti insisted at the time the government had no money to award a pay increase.

The Apex Council, which represents all civil servants, accepted the increase although the Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ), which has called for a teachers’ strike, dismissed the increment as paltry.

PTUZ secretary-general Raymond Majongwe stormed out of a press conference called by the Apex Council to announce the increment, accusing the body of accepting “peanuts”.

Apex Council is composed of PTUZ, the Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association, the Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe, the College Lecturers’ Association of Zimbabwe and Public Service Association.

Tendai Chikowore, the Apex Council president, said the increment would be with effect from July 1 and will be effective until December 31. She said the next review would be in January 2012.

"A protracted process on negotiations and consultations between government and the Apex council leadership, which culminated in the historic meeting with President Mugabe on April 6, 2011, has resulted in an agreement on the levels of remuneration to be paid to civil servants and defined a way forward towards the attainment of the PDL-informed remuneration package for the least-paid civil servants," Chikowore said.

Majongwe said: “We don’t need a spirit medium to speak on our behalf. As PTUZ, we are very disappointed and we want to state it categorically and without doubt that we are unhappy.”

But, other union leaders accused Majongwe of seeking cheap publicity, claiming his organisation had accepted the salary hike during negotiations only to renege at the press briefing.

The Teachers' Union of Zimbabwe CEO Michael Nyawo, credited Mugabe for the pay rise and said his union was taking the strike option off the table.

"He (President Mugabe) said something would come and this is the something. At least this is a roadmap for greater things to come. Though it was not exactly what we wanted, we understand the economy is not performing as expected but at least action has been taken," he said.

Labels: , ,


(HERALD) Firms urged to explore Zambian market

Firms urged to explore Zambian market
Friday, 01 July 2011 01:00
From Martin Kadzere in Ndola, Zambia

ZIMBABWE Trade attaché to Zambia Mrs Stella Nyangweta has urged Zimbabwean companies to "vigorously" start exploring business opportunities on the Copper-belt.
She spoke on the sidelines of the ongoing 47th edition of the Zambia International Trade Fair being held in the country's third largest city Ndola.

"Improved copper mining activities in the (Copperbelt) province would provide good opportunities for local businesses in engineering, construction and protective clothing," she said.

"We have been concentrating on Lusaka and now that the Copperbelt is coming up, companies back home must seriously direct their efforts in penetrating this market.
"Opportunities are growing in sectors such as engineering, protective clothing and construction. I am confident that local companies can benefit from that Copperbelt's growth."

The ZITF opened here on Tuesday with 13 Zimbabwean companies are participating.
The exhibition, under the theme "Innovation for competitiveness", has also attracted companies from within the region and Africa.

Although it has started at a slow pace, with some of the exhibitors still setting up their stands, a ZITF spokesperson said the activities are likely to pick up during the course of the day.

"We are happy to have Zimbabwean companies," said a ZITF spokesperson. "It is a very important improvement on what we had last year.

"Zimbabwe has become one of our major trading partners and this is an appropriate platform to enhance trade relations with Harare and the rest of the region."

Among Zimbabwean companies participating are Hwange Colliery Company Limited, which already enjoys a strong market for its coal in Zambia.

Some of the companies that came under the ZimTrade banner include PG Industries, Art Corporation, Zesa Enterprises and ZECO Holdings.

ZimTrade operations manager Mr Stanley Tupiri applauded companies participating at the fair, saying it would present them with an opportunity to benefit from rejuvenated business in the Copperbelt.

"Local companies really need to explore the Copperbelt as it provides quite (a lot of) tremendous opportunities. "Even those companies that have not come for the trade fair should start taking this market seriously."

Zambia has in the last few years overtaken South Africa as Zimbabwe's biggest trading partner on the continent and it remains a market hugely unexplored by local companies due to lack of information.

But opportunities to expand the trade and economic partnership could be greatly enhanced by the steady economic recovery Zimbabwe has made, which will enable it to produce more for the Zambian export market.

Labels: , , ,


(HERALD) MANHERU-: Nyikayaramba: Teaching the MDC what the soil refuses

(HERALD) MANHERU-: Nyikayaramba: Teaching the MDC what the soil refuses
by Nathaniel Manheru

The mighty argument between our death-wishing Prime Minister and Brigadier-General (Douglas) Nyikayaramba is just too sumptuous for cantankerous Manheru to let pass. I have to dip into the pot, mould at least one good morsel and roll it in the blinking, pepe-hot soup. The temptation is to dismiss this big argument as a matter between a posturing prime minister and an odd general given to trespassing beyond the grounds of well-designated barracks.

How wrong, how delusional! So much is at stake in this one hell of a hefty brawl sure to shake this society to its very firmament. Let us briefly reconstruct the skeleton of the argument.

Semiotics of power

One day in June, one Brigadier-General Nyikayaramba took a blunt razor blade to shear the scapel of the Prime Minister and his party, the MDC.
Both the Prime Minister and his party were unfit to rule this country, the general said, adding in the unlikely event of such an abomination, he would rather resign than salute Tsvangirai. And a salute is much more than an activity of a trained hand. It is a symbolic gesture, indeed a cardinal part of semiotics of real governing power. Seen that way, the general's posture, or more accurately, refusal with it, is remarkably profound.

When politics is not guns

Immediately, the Prime Minister reacted urging the "bad" general to remain penned in his barracks. Or if he fancied action in the political domain, to simply shear himself of his camouflaged uniform for this new role which the Prime Minister thinks abhors the wear of war. I quote the Prime Minister: "If you want politics remove the uniform and we will show you what politics is. It is not guns. Stop intimidating people - convince Zimbabweans to vote for you." Of course politics is guns, and the premier knows that perfectly well. Which is why he craves for a salute - even a half-hearted one - from those guys in uniform. Is that not what the so-called security sector reforms are all about?

Off to Barcelona, with hate

Even after this broadside, the Prime Minister did not feel sufficiently purged of his boiling anger. He still needed something else for a good catharsis. A week later and well away from the country and the "offending" general - in Barcelona, Spain to be specific - he again upped the ante, telling his cosmopolitan audience: "Everyday, they (security chiefs) are dabbling in politics, even seeking to influence the date of the election and the conditions under which that election will be held. When the Police Commissioner-General and the Attorney General state publicly that they support a particular political party in an inclusive Government, as in our case, the rule of law becomes perverted and people lose confidence in the institutions they lead."
Before long, in the prepared speech, the Prime Minister made a direct appeal to the international community (read the West) to intervene to ensure "change" came to Zimbabwe through a free and fair election. It was not any change, like land reforms for instance. It was his change, the MDC change for which he sought intervention.

Beneath the plinth of State

Before we turn to General Nyikayaramba, three things have already happened. Firstly, the Prime Minister was no longer reacting to a general. Rather, he was now making a systemic point, which is why both the prosecutorial and arresting arms of Government came under withering attack, in addition of course to the uniformed services which the general personified.

Secondly, the Prime Minister took what started off as a duel between him and the general to a court of international public opinion, well away from the national framework. That put the matter not just beyond his original quarreling partner, General Nyikayaramba, but also beyond his Government and country. We are talking here about the Prime Minister of this country, but who voluntarily decides to jump past national platforms set up partly at his behest to address such very matters, all to place his grievances elsewhere in foreign lands and before foreign audiences.

I am talking about national platforms such as the weekly Monday meeting between him and his boss, President Mugabe. I am talking about the weekly Tuesday Cabinet meetings which also include provision for extraordinary sessions to deal with emerging or unique problems of inclusivity. I am talking about the National Security Council - that institutional reminder of Rhodesia - set up solely to meet promptings from the Rhodesian-coloured MDC.

No, the big man decided to jump off the glistening, palatial plinth of State for a deep dive into the dim, murky and rough world of military barracks, all to parley and spar with a uniformed officer he accuses of joining the political domain inappropriately clad in military uniform.

Yet by conduct, Tsvangirai became the perfect alter ego of the "wayward" general: he strayed into a military barrack fully cladded in civilian uniform! And so, the reposte from Nyikayaramba should be fairly straightforward: "If you want the military remove the civilian uniform and we will show you what soldiership is. It is not words. Stop provoking commanders - earn their respect and salute."

Surely the way to tell generals not to go political cannot be through an overly political, overly partisan platform we call a rally? To do so is precisely to communicate an opposite message, which is what the Prime Minister has so well done. I will defer the third point for now.

Best attire for security threats

Expectedly, the general's response was political, very political and here is a sample of that response: "What Tsvangirai is saying is nonsense. We are dealing with a national security threat, which can only be dealt with by people in uniform. If it was a normal political environment, one would hope to retire at some point and join politics. However, we can't afford to be in an akimbo when there is this foreign attack . . .

Tsvangirai doesn't pose a political threat in any way in Zimbabwe, but is a major security threat.

"He takes instructions from foreigners who seek to effect illegal regime change in Zimbabwe. That is what has invited the security forces to be involved because we want to ensure we protect our national security interests . . . Daydreamers who want to reverse the gains of our liberation struggle will continue daydreaming. They can go to hell . . . They will never rule this country. We cannot keep quiet. We will continue speaking and as the security forces, we will not sit back and watch things going wrong."

One threat Sui generis

The general cut deeper: "If his (Tsvangirai) party was a genuine indigenous political party, we wouldn't be involved. People have to understand that our mandate as security forces is to make sure we protect our sovereignty and the integrity of the nation. We had Abel Muzorewa, Enock Dumbutshena and other people forming their political parties, but we never had any problems with them.
"These were indigenous political parties that understood our national interests. As the security forces, we should be worried if we see the British and American machinations . . . Soldiers are not going to sit back and watch while the foreign forces want to attack us."

To be or not be in uniform

Only a fool rushes to shorthands like the GPA or security sector reforms in order to wish away core issues sticking out so sorely from this great altercation whose simpler, funnier side may be summarised as to wear or not to wear, that is the question! Yet the issues are deeper than the sartorial, and one needs to go beyond the uniform to recover the core issues camouflaged by the angry rhetoric. A whole general has been ruled offside by a man who happens to be the Prime Minister of this country.

Tsvangirai did not use the Monday meeting; did not use Cabinet; did not use the National Security Council; did not approach the President as the Commander-in-Chief, to query what the Brigadier General said.
Instead he used an MDC-T rally in Gweru and again in Bulawayo to vent his reaction to the general. He could not have spoken as the Prime Minister of this country therefore. It is thus plain insane to suggest that the general promised the Prime Minister a coup. How do you coup a man who is not Head of State or Commander-in-Chief, coup a man who is a mere chief minister?

Much worse a man whose self-apotheosis is founded on miasmic grounds of an election that might come sometime some day, which he claims he shall win, ceteris paribus! And he feels so strongly about the matter of generals that he commits his own freedom and life to its realisation.
He is ready to "rot" in jail to ensure boys keeps to their barracks. To die even. Surely something great must be at stake to trigger such a self-immolation wish, or more accurately the symbolic offer of it. I happen to know that the MDC-T leader loves life, loves it whole and larger, such that in him death will never find a willing and waiting victim. With the enhanced status, the pomp of Prime Ministerial office, that instinct could only have grown stronger! The Prime Minister was not making an offer with his life, merely stressing a point through a dramatic metaphor! This is why no iota of heroic self-sacrifice should ever attach to this grandiloquent figure of speech.

Posing a continuing threat

Significantly General Nyikayaramba is using the plural "we" throughout his address and interviews. It is not a royal "we", I am sure. He is representing a shared viewpoint, institutional one even.He is a general, is he not? And one peeping upper echelons of the command if one considers that he carries one star. He has called a man who occupies the office of Prime Minister a "national security threat" to be dealt with by men in uniform. He has linked that man to foreign interests, specifically the British and the Americans. He has linked that man to a challenge to our sovereignty, to the reversal of our liberation goals.

Which takes me to the third point I had suspended. By taking the argument to Barcelona, indeed attacking national offices in a foreign country, and what is more, appealing for international intervention, the Prime Minister gave credence to charges against him, did he not? He came across as indeed working against the national interest, working with and for foreign interests and, in light of the reigning interventionist ethos in global affairs, as indeed posing a continuing extraordinary security threat to the Republic, to use the parlance of Zidera.

Excusing the good general

Equally, by using a party political platform to react to the general, he exonerated the general from aspersions of attacking a national office, thereby threatening the constitutional order. Nyikayaramba's censorious remarks related to a party politician and to a political party; they did not relate to the Prime Minister, his Office or his conduct in that national Office. And, judging by his choice of platforms, content and allies, Tsvangirai agrees Nyikayaramba was grappling with his misconduct as a leader of a political party. The General has nothing to worry about; this column has no reason for self-restraint. The man is fair game and here are a few sobering thoughts for him.

The General with an army

Let no one in both MDCs ever think that Nyikayaramba is aberrational. He is not. Far from being alone, he has an "army". He is expressing a deeply held view which is well-founded. What is more, he is expressing a view whose currency goes beyond the barracks. Such a view cannot be wished away. It cannot be corrected at a rally in Gweru or Bulawayo. It cannot be resolved in Barcelona. From its launch, the MDC became a permanent item on national security threat assessment. Surely, this cannot be news to the MDC leader or his friends?

The MDC was founded and funded by foreign interests to achieve ends quite inimical to the goals of this country, nation and its people. Those ends are still on active file. They include restoring white claims to land rights in this country. They include "preserving white way of life" and interests as defined under Rhodesia. With the land gone, the focus has now shifted to mines and mineral interests, which is why both MDCs speak with twisted tongues on indigenisation and empowerment.

That the likes of Biti are beginning to chime different notes on land owes less to a change of view and more to a recognition that Zanu-PF has irreversibly overthrown the Rhodesian status quo. We have nothing to be grateful about. And, land is a national security issue, a liberation goal, an identity marker, a sovereignty yardstick. You take a stance against it, "nyika inoramba".

The man who loves sanctions

By inviting sanctions against this country, this nation and its people, the MDC formations have injured the national interest, threatened its very stability. Both formations are still to recant. As recent as the Sandton Sadc Summit, the Sadc anti-sanctions lobby disclosed that Tsvangirai and his MDC-T had told the Americans not to lift sanctions against Zimbabwe.

He needs the hurtful sanctions for leverage against Zanu-PF, he is quoted by America's Johnnie Carson as saying. Surely this can only be the stance of a foreign political pawn, never that of the Prime Minister of this country?

It is traitorous, it is an injury to the national interest, it is a veritable threat to national security. And when the opportunity for self-reclaiming was availed to the Prime Minister through the anti-sanctions campaign, he snubbed it, suggesting he cannot break free from foreign interests which stand to gain from those sanctions. How can Nyikayaramba ever be wrong?

A governance KPCS?

The Prime Minister is yet to find his own tongue on the issue of diamonds and the KPCS. Set aside those turgid press releases from his party office, you don't find him associated with the national campaign for the liberation of our diamonds. The stilted argument is that the diamonds are being abused by Zanu-PF. For him and his party, the solution is to hand over Marange to foreign interests and de Beers through an intricate certification regime that allows Britain, America, Canada and Australia a free hand under cover of human rights.

Let us transfer the logic to our very independence. The MDC formations argue it is being abused by Zanu-PF. That means the solution surely should be introducing a political KPCS for governance, with a British monitor at the helm, he-e? A second Lord Soames? Politically, this is servile thinking born out of political tutelage no one in the ranks of both liberation movements ever envisaged. The anodyne to vexatious political issues of the day is a return to colonial relations?

The earth will reject him

My last point on this matter is a speculative one, albeit a well founded speculation. Blair's self-confessed reason for wanting to invade Zimbabwe during his time related to imperial white interests. But these interests spoke the language of the MDC to shore up their otherwise dirty cause.

Equally, America uses MDC and Tsvangirai to sell its planned war games here. Tsvangirai's recent trip to Gabon is another hobbling step in that perverse direction. Any hostile action between Zimbabwe and the expansionist West will have Tsavngirai and his MDC as the main pretext and publishable reason.

He is the cat's paw in an imperial game against his own country, his own people. About that, Nyikayaramba is dead right. And the General is not alone. Tsvangirai might as well know that I, Nathaniel Manheru of the vaHera clan too consider him a national security threat. Between the General and I is a common cause. Zanu-PF has no reason to feel awkward on this matter. So much is at stake to be crippled by vain issues of propriety. The man is a security threat to this country. That won't go away because Zanu-PF has played shy.

That won't go away until Tsvangirai does something about his wayward politics. The ballot cannot cleanse him. Worse, an invading foreign army. The soil will weep against him in dreadful chastisement. This earth will reject him. Hence, Nyikayaramba. Icho!

Labels: , , , , , ,


Friday, July 01, 2011

(HERALD) Communal, A1 resettled farmers dominate tobacco industry

Communal, A1 resettled farmers dominate tobacco industry
Tuesday, 28 June 2011 01:00
Business Reporter

Communal and A1 resettled farmers are now dominating the tobacco industry with the two sectors contributing 81 percent of the registered growers for the 2011-12 farming season.

So far, 65 439 farmers have registered to produce flue-cured tobacco next season and of these, 49 631 growers are A1 and communal farmers. According to the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board, 24 051 of the 49 631 registered farmers are communal while 28 580 are A1 farmers.

The balance of 12 808 farmers is made up of 6 905 farmers from the small-scale commercial sector, 1 747 large-scale and 4 156 A2 farmers sector has growers.
Since the land reform programme, a number of new players have joined the tobacco industry with communal and A1 farmers topping the list.

The number of tobacco farmers registered so far is an improvement from last season. A total of 53 065 farmers had registered to grow tobacco by August last year.

Communal area farmers are also topping the list of burley producers with 370 having so far registered to grow next season.

The A1 sector so far has 131 registered growers, 42 are from the small-scale sector, 27 from A2 and four from the large-scale sector.

Macheke farmer Mrs Alice Chibamu, who has not been growing tobacco, said although the crop was labour intensive it was highly rewarding.

"We have since diversified so that if one fails we will still get profits from other crops. Most small-scale farmers in our area now have a plot for tobacco production and we hope the prices will continue to improve," she said.

Tobacco Association of Zimbabwe secretary general Mr Stan Kasukuwere said the fact that communal and A1 farmers were dominating the tobacco industry was a remarkable achievement since the sector used to be dominated by white commercial farmers.

"The land reform has opened our eyes and now every other farmer wants to produce tobacco. For the past 10 years we have seen a shift on farmers moving from traditional crops to the former elite crops.

"Our farmers have also gained experience and now have the technical know how to produce the crop," he said.

Mr Kasukuwere said the quality of the crop being produced has been improving over the years and said he was confident Zimbabwe will soon get back to become one of the major producer of the golden leaf.

TIMB has decentralised registration to provinces to speed up the process and also make it convenient for farmers outside Harare.

TIMB chief executive Dr Andrew Matibiri said registration was important in that farmers needed to have growers numbers which are used to identify farmers when they bring their tobacco to the floors.

He said the growers' number were also critical in the processing of payments once farmers have sold their crop and when they are applying for support from tobacco contractors.

Tobacco has emerged one the best paying crop compared to maize and cotton which explains why most farmers are now shifting to the producing the crop.

The industry has, however, been experiencing some challenges as it is failing to cope with the increasing number of growers.

Labels: , , ,


(HERALD) Biti's shock climbdown

COMMENT - Also see: Communal, A1 resettled farmers dominate tobacco industry The MDC don't waste time trying to sell Zimbabwe for loose change.

Biti's shock climbdown
Thursday, 30 June 2011 01:00
By Lloyd Gumbo

FINANCE Minister and MDC-T secretary-general Mr Tendai Biti, has made a major climbdown on the land reform programme, acknowledging it is successful and irreversible.

He challenged the international community to accept the reality on the ground about Zimbabwe's empowerment programmes and attacked negative perceptions portrayed by the Western media. MDC-T has in the past castigated the land reform programme, describing it as a failure.

Speaking at a breakfast meeting hosted by the Commonwealth Business Council in London last Thursday, Minister Biti said: "The land reform is irreversible no matter how ugly it was done."

He said it was, however, essential to conclude the land question by restoring title deeds, long leases, resolving the issue of compensation and moving away from Government-funded agriculture to private sector.

Minister Biti urged the international community to make informed decisions based on facts and to adopt a long-term approach when dealing with Zimba-bwe.

"Not to miss the numerous opportunities that exist, like the United States, which has remained intransigent and aloof," he said.

Minister Biti said the land reform programme was successful judging by production output in commercial crops such as tobacco since 2008.

"There is huge potential in the agriculture sector. Testimony lies in the growth in the sector, for example this year's tobacco output reached 174 million kg, resulting in the opening of tobacco auction floors in January instead of the traditional April.

"The production of maize has gone up from 300 000 to 1,5 million tonnes between 2008 and 2011," Minister Biti said.

He defended the country's land reform programme, saying it was meant to empower the locals.

The Finance Minister said it was important for every country to democratise local participation in the economy, adding that indigenisation was not unique to Zimbabwe.

"There is need to strike a balance between empowerment and attracting investment.
"It is a myth that indigenisation is nationalisa- tion.

"Real percentages depend on the negotiations and are influenced to a large extent on the size of the investment and the package an investor presents," Minister Biti said.

He appealed to the international community to invest in all the country's sectors.

Minister Biti said there were plans to make Zimbabwe's economy ICT driven.
He appealed for investment through foreign direct investment, lines of credit and the overseas development assistance to meet US$ 9 billion, which the African Development Bank estimates would be required to refurbish infrastructure in the next five years.

Minister Biti also appealed for US$400 million capital through lines of credit to technologies facto- ries.

He used the case of electrical power infrastructure to demonstrate the country's needs across all economic sectors.

Responding to questions on whether Zimbabwean courts can uphold property rights, Minister Biti said: "The country's judiciary measures are up to any other elsewhere in the world.

"The judges and officials are well-read, well-trained and respected globally."

He also expressed optimism that Zimbabwe would tap into its highly skilled nationals who left the country for greener pastures in the region and abroad.

Minister Biti said he expected only a few to return but expressed confidence that Zimbabweans in the Diaspora would "plough back financially, intellectually and technologically from their various loca- tions."

He dismissed statistics that indicated that Zimbabwe had 85 percent unemployment saying they were inaccurate because they did not take into consideration the informal sector.

Minister Biti claimed that a new voters' roll was required to "ensure that half of the six million registered voters, who are deceased are removed."

However, the Registrar-General, Mr Tobaiwa Mudede said the voters' roll was clean while challenging those who claim that there ghost voters to inform his department.
On the security sector, Minister Biti said there was a deadlock on the reform, between those who wanted "the securocrats to serve the constitution and those opposed."

"The democratisation process is progressing, the constitution-making process is at an advanced stage, some media reforms have been implemented but the challenge with the media reforms is technological backwardness," Minister Biti said.

Representatives of Rio Tinto, Barclays Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Crown Agents, British American Tobacco and Invertec Asset Management attended the meeting.

Mr Biti could not be reached on his mobile phone yesterday to comment on his presentation.

Labels: ,


(HERALD) US obsession with Zim strange

US obsession with Zim strange
Friday, 01 July 2011 01:00
By Tichaona Zindoga

There is something strange, and particularly evil about the United States of America's obsession with Zimbabwe. It is no doubt based on racism and an enduring dislike of the self-determination of black people of this country. Was it not Henry Kissinger who declared that Zimbabwe and South Africa did not belong to black Africa?

The US, a beneficiary of British colonialism here, was one of the countries that helped bust international sanctions against the rogue and racist regime of Ian Smith. The US imported chrome from the then Southern Rhodesia wherein Smith had declared the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in 1965.

Smith is notoriously noted for his statement that black Zimbabweans would never rule themselves in a thousand years. Smith, despite being shown the dignity and the magnanimity of the policy of reconciliation adopted by the black Government in 1980, died the same old, racist in Cape Town, South Africa.

At the Lancaster House talks that preceded Zimbabwe's independence in 1980, the US, under President Jimmy Carter promised to fund the land reform in Zimbabwe, alongside Britain.

As the one important element of the talks and the reason why the liberation war had been fought since 1890, the score of land, and in this instance its resolution by the twin pledge by Britain and America, it carried the day.

Yet, no funds have come to date from America. This contributed to the sticky question that the land question has been, particularly in recent times.

When the situation imploded in 2000 as Zimbabwe reclaimed its land, disrupting white capital, the US came onto the scene again.

In 2001, former President George W Bush promulgated into law the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act, after buying into the bilateral land dispute between Zimbabwe and Britain.

The law provides for the barring of trade between Zimbabwe and the US in private and national levels.

The law provides for the barring of Zimbabwe's access to multilateral lending institutions and cancellation of indebtedness.

While seeking to penalise US individuals and companies dealing with the Government of Zimbabwe and other designated persons - who are mainly drawn from business and politics - the US, through its Office of Foreign Assets Control sniffs and chases Zimbabwe's overseas transactions so that it can freeze them.

It has been remarked that sanctions are silent atomic bombs - and ironically, the United States is noted for bombing Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki resulting in some of the worst disasters the world has seen - and so, the socio-economic effects of sanctions is clear.

It is clear because they are intended and calculated to foment a humanitarian disaster which would see the US getting on with another Marshal Plan.

While the sanctions are still in place, the United States has been trying to block the sale of Zimbabwean diamonds at international markets.

Zimbabwe's gems are said to be able to satisfy a quarter of the global market and more than satisfy the country's fiscal requirements.

Zimbabwe has complied with the minimum requirements of the international diamond watchdog, the Kimberly Process and Certification Scheme.

Zimbabwe is a founding member of this voluntary body set up to fight the proliferation of "blood diamonds".

Blood diamonds are gems used to finance rebel wars.

Zimbabwe has a legitimate Government and if anything its power has been shaken by opposition bought, created and funded by the US.

The US has tried to frustrate Zimbabwe's sales and has used the provision for consensus building among parties to the KP to veto Zimbabwe's certification.

The civic society, which America sponsors, and US' Anglo-Saxon cousins in Canada and Australia as well as the likes of Israel and Belgium have been throwing spanners into the works.

The US even affords to hide behind these forces to disrupt consensus.
It does not matter that these constitute a minority in the KP.

In fact, many stakeholders have been dismayed that the diamond industry has been held to ransom by narrow racist political interests.

African stakeholders have been particularly slighted and have openly pledged to support Zimbabwe.

African countries produce the bulk of diamonds sold in Europe and India.

And as the current KP chair Mr Mathieu Yamba of the Democratic Republic of Congo has stood by the fact that Zimbabwe has in principle met KP requirements and therefore should sell its gems unconditionally, there has been very familiar noises.

After the KP recently gave two Zimbabwean companies Marange Resources and Mbada Diamonds the greenlight to unconditionally sell gems from the Marange area, the US came with its guns blazing.

Zimbabwe should not sell its diamonds, so believes an unrelenting US.
Victoria Nuland, spokesperson for the US State Department, was outraged such a decision had been made.

And guess what, she went on to conjure the technical nicety of consensus which the US guarantees will forever frustrate any efforts that do not conform to its whims.

Said Nuland: "The United States is deeply disappointed with the Kinshasa Intersessional as it related to Zimbabwe.

"The United States has been a strong supporter of the Kimberly Process in the past and desires to find a way forward for the Kimberley Process that includes Zimbabwe and preserves the credibility of the process.

"The United States believes that progress with respect to exports from the Marange area of Zimbabwe can occur solely through a mechanism agreed to by consensus among KP participants."

She also pontificated: "The Kimberley Process works best when producers and consumers are collaborating, and when civil society is an active participant.

"The US would like to ensure the Kimberley Process' future and enable diamond exports to contribute positively to the region's people and economy."

Surely, there is nothing new in Nuland's statements and she should have declared her country's interests first and foremost.

The United States is disappointed in the KP's decision for the obvious racist reason that seeks to disempower the black majority of Zimbabwe.

At any rate, selling diamonds will bust US and European Union sanctions.

Nuland knows that her country will never seek positive consensus on Zimbabwe and its support for the many civil sector outfits is predicated on throwing spanners into Zimbabwe's bid to legitimately.

Lies have been spun and false documents circulated in misrepresenting the story of Zimbabwe by the likes of Partnership Africa Canada, Global Witness, Human Rights Watch, Zimbabwe Human Rights Association, and "diamond researcher" Farai Maguwu's Center for Research and Research.

The profundity of this desperation was demonstrated by the so-called civil society's rejection of the findings of founding chair of KP and industrialist Mr Abbey Chikane who came to Zimbabwe on several missions to oversee compliance as recommended by the body in Swakopmund, Namibia, in 2009.

Notably, Chikane said that Zimbabwe met KP conditions better than many African producers.

He was impressed with what he saw, including the security in Marange, even granting that state security be maintained until all concerns could provide their own civilian security.

Chikane was here. He is no politician but every inch professional.

There is nothing new the likes of Nuland can tell him.

On the other hand, does it not offend sensibility that as the US continues to stifle Zimbabwe's efforts to revive her economy, one of its papers was celebrating that Zimbabwe is the second poorest country in the world?

A report released recently by the monthly Global Finance magazine put Zimbabwe second bottom ahead of Congo Brazzaville among 182 countries in the wealth classification indexed on the Gross Domestic Product.

It said: "The poorest 10 countries were by order of their poverty Congo, Zimbabwe, Burundi, Liberia, Eritrea, Niger, Central African Republic, Sierra Leone, Togo and Madagascar."

Surely a country with the diamond capacity to satisfy a quarter of the world market, among other riches should not be in such a position, if the report is anything to go by.

The US is working round the clock to stifle Zimbabwe's growth and development. This obsession can only be motivated by malice that borders on criminality.

After all, US sanctions against Zimbabwe fall outside the ambit of the United Nations making them illegal at international law.

Former US Congresswoman Cynthia Mckinney put it succinctly when she accused proponents of Zidera of being racist.

She noted that land was in the centre of dispute between Zimbabwe and the West.
The United States' imposition of Zidera, she said, would continue to marginalise black people who had just got the land that had been stolen from their ancestors.

She said: "When we get right down to it, this legislation is nothing more than a formal declaration of United States complicity in a programme to maintain white-skin privilege. We can call it an ‘incentives' bill, but that does not change its essential ‘sanctions' nature. It is racist and against the interests of the masses of Zimbabweans."

Labels: ,


(HERALD) Xenophobic attacks: Barbaric, unAfrican

Xenophobic attacks: Barbaric, unAfrican
Friday, 01 July 2011 01:00

TAKING a sabbatical and retreating to the village after a year or so of continued churning out of news stories, features, opinions and analyses for the national flagship, where this villager works with hordes of other inspiring wordsmiths, can be as soothing as it is refreshing.

Spending time on a rock along the banks of Dande River, watching some fish swim non-chalantly in the crystal clear waters, a kingfisher performing antics for its breakfast and two fish eagles perform a duet atop a riverine tree, makes this villager enjoy the fruits, peace and tranquility of Zimbabwe.

Yes, Independent Zimbabwe, for, more than three decades ago in Rhodesia, it was taboo for all villagers - elders, youngsters and yes, I mean all blacks - to cross Dande River and sit on this stone which was on the side of a white man's farm.

Yes, Andrew Pears would not allow me to cross Dande River, without beating me and everyone from my ancestry lineage.

The barren land, west of Dande River, aptly named Sipolilo (Chipuriro) Tribal Trust Land, now the land of milk, honey and dust or Guruve, if you like is where he belonged, and it was a dream to cross the Dande River eastwards. It was a no go area.

While sitting on the stone, one question crossed this villager's mind. Could he be equally safe if he sat on a stone on the other side of the Limpopo River?
Limpopo and Dande are rivers in Africa and so are Zambezi, Nile, Niger, Tungwi, Tugwana, Chobe or Musengezi, Bubi and Ruya, among others.

Is a river not a river? Are Africans not Africans, wherever they are? It is courtesy of Zimbabwe's land reform programme that today this villager owns the land, till and rest on any corner and enjoy the river breeze.

This villager, who is so used to reading and writing had decided not to vomit his ink this week, taking time off to spend moments, between the river bank and the village soothsayer's hovel, learning to throw bones.

The ability to foretell the future seems fascinating but, I had to abandon that lesson because of South Africa. South Africa . . . South Africa . . . South Africa. This South Africa, former apartheid South Africa now attacking black Zimbabweans because they belong to the other side of the Limpopo and are therefore not entitled to eke a living from Azania.

It was the news from the Rainbow Nation, which, unlike the beautiful hues, is not so multi-hued when it comes to accepting African people from neighbouring countries.
South Africa remains a thorn in the villager's flesh. For a country born out of a revolution, in which Zimbabwe played a vital role and, for a country run by a revolutionary party, which should be the vanguard of Africanism, to have its cadres militantly engage in xenophobic attacks on neighbours is not only shocking but barbaric.

For victims of apartheid to accept being dragged to court in their own country by their former oppressors for singing the songs that drove and oiled their revolution against the same oppressors and then fail to co-habit with fellow Africans, just because they come from across the river is not only stupid but unimaginable.
It is silly to kill each other based on the boundaries, imposed on us by westerners.
Was it not the hodgepodge and mishmash of Euro-centric boundaries born in yonder Berlin in 1884 that imposed the boundaries on us?

So, can we kill each other so badly because one comes from across the river. What difference does it make to come from across Dande River or Limpopo River? Are these not mere geomorphological features on one continent?

The village soothsayer, that ageless fountain of wisdom, says the South Africans are being too myopic in that they still need Zimbabweans in the same manner they needed them during their struggle.

"South Africa has not yet started the struggle to economically emancipate its people so they are very disgruntled.

"Unlike in Zimbabwe where the black majority have taken the reigns of political and economic power, black South Africans are still dazzled by the rainbow, confused by their poverty and still insignificantly participating in national economics.

"Are we not being not being forgetful? Are we not having short memories? Vendas are Mapungubwe. Are the Zulus, Xhosa, Swatis, Ndebele not of Nguni ancestry lineage? Why should the Limpopo River mean so much in terms of dividing us the people of these two countries?

"Zimbabwe was bombed, ask those who were in Avondale, by South African mercenaries for supporting the liberation movements and they cannot just payback by unleashing xenophobic attacks on Zimbabweans.

"Sooner than later, the black South African will know where to vent their anger for they are stuck in poverty, while respecting a rainbow of hunger, dehumanisation and abject poverty. What is the purpose of this rainbow save to keep the minority's hegemony on economic power.

"Soon, South Africa will explode and I mean soon, over the land issue. We changed from Rhodesia to Zimbabwe but they could not change to Azania to please the West. Soon, I said soon . . .,'' contends the soothsayer.

It is a trite but true observation that xenophobic attacks are callous, barbaric, inhuman and unAfrican.

The nonsense must stop now and Africans must live as one, for they are all victims of colonialism and neo-colonialism, and are all still licking wounds from the humiliation and brutality they suffered in colonial Africa.

Instead of xenophobic attacks, Afri-cans must be united to the marrow.

Labels: , ,


(NYASATIMES) Malawi’s uncertain future

Malawi’s uncertain future
By Nyasa Times
Published: July 1, 2011

To say that at the moment there are signs that within three years Malawi will see prosperity, is indeed wishful thinking.

When President Bingu wa Muthalika addressed the nation on 24th June 2011, he pose a question. He asked why Malawians were doubting him. This was a revelation that he too, had realized that Malawians are doubting his capabilities of running this country.

Mutharika: Has messed up things

In fact, the President should not have asked the question of doubt. He should have realized that, even the speech he was giving, which some media dubbed it empty, offered no solution to the problems of forex and fuel shortage, zero deficit budget and countless others. With such mediocrity in addressing important issues, why should Malawians trust him?

It is not an exaggeration to say that at the moment people publicly debate the bleak future of this country. What comes out of such debates is that no one knows where the Muthalika government is taking this country to. It has so far brought Malawi to its knees. Businesses are closing down and throwing more jobless people into already flooded streets. Almost all ordinary Malawians have a story of misery to tell.

It is true that during Muluzi’s era the Malawi economy was on a downward spiral. However, some people still proudly say that their small businesses were up and running and money was not as scarce as it is today.

The problem with the Muthalika government is that it has failed to translate the much talked about economic growth (on paper) to tally with the situation on the ground. It goes without saying that, if there is growth people should be living a much better life. This is far from it. It makes no sense when the government looks at the subsidized fertilizer coupon as the alpha and omega of development. Just like any other person in the world, Malawians need money. Unfortunately, Admarc is very unreliable and people have to sell their maize to private traders at a give away price.

Malawi is a laughing stock in the SADC region when it comes to development just because of having doubtful governments. The government should just wake up and take the bull by the horn. President Muthalika and his cabinet must be serious and start discussing issues without fear of reprisals from anyone. Instead of giving threats of expulsion to a courageous MP like Henry Phoya, his voice of reason must be emulated. If cabinet ministers continue to be passive in order to protect their positions, this country will soon reach a breaking point and become ungovernable. The positions that people want to protect will no longer be there.

The Muthalika government blamed Muluzi for running down the economy. Fair enough. When it was in minority it used to blame the opposition for delaying the budget. It is now in majority and the budget just sails through and yet things are falling apart. It has no choice but to blame its own mismanagement.

The DPP needs to be reminded that the same Malawians, who gave them an overwhelming majority, will kick them out of government if people continue living in dire straits.

A word of warning is that when people are continuously suffering they no longer care about who takes over government, provided the leader who has failed them has been removed. This was the scenario when Dr Kamuzu Banda was voted out in 1994.

*Emily Mkamanga, Malawi’s political commentator and Nyasa Times columnist based in Mzuzu

Emily Mkamanga Email

Labels: , ,


(NEWZIMBABWE) Radio publishes names of 'CIO agents'

Radio publishes names of 'CIO agents'
01/07/2011 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

A LONDON-BASED Zimbabwean radio station has published a list of what it claims are names of Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) agents in what could be potentially a major national security breach.
The radio station, which broadcasts to Zimbabwe on short wave, posted a list of 83 names on its website and promised to release more names every Thursday for the next six weeks.

CIO director general Happyton Bonyongwe appeared sixth on the alphabet-organised list released on Thursday. The radio station offered no justification for the move which analysts say has no precedence anywhere in the world.

Writing a week before the disclosures, SW Radio Africa reporter Lance Guma said: “For years, agents working for the CIO have relied on their secret identities to carry out abductions, torture and the murder of opposition activists.

“But recently, SW Radio Africa received a document, leaked in 2001, containing a list of CIO agents at the time.”

Guma said it was “expected that a number of the people on the list may have retired or passed away”, adding: “Agents recruited after 2001 may not be found on the list but there will be many who are still serving.”

We could not independently verify the authenticity of the list last night, described by SW Radio Africa as an “Internal Directory of the President’s Office”.

But the news value of the decision to publish names of serving CIO agents, including their ID numbers and addresses, was questioned by one respected Zimbabwean political commentator.

Oxford University-based Blessing Miles-Tendi, the author of ‘Making History in Mugabe's Zimbabwe: Politics, Intellectuals and the Media’, said: “Firstly, what evidence is there that the list of names is authentic?

“Secondly, what does SW Radio Africa hope to accomplish, which is constructive, by publishing these names, ID numbers and physical addresses?

“Thirdly, SW Radio Africa's Lance Guma once made an outlandish claim that UK-based public intellectual George Shire is Air Marshal Perrance Shiri's brother. George suffered serious consequences, one of which was the desecration of his father's grave, because of Guma's fable.

“SW Radio Africa's latest action underlines the dearth in responsible practice in Zimbabwe's journalism fraternity.”

The Zanu PF-side of Zimbabwe’s power sharing government has long called on Britain to shut down the donor-funded SW Radio Africa, saying its continued broadcasts were a violation of Zimbabwe’s “sovereignty”.

SW Radio Africa has justified its broadcasts on short and medium wave saying it is denied space in Zimbabwe where the state-owned Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation enjoys a radio and television monopoly despite commitments to reform by the power sharing government.

Labels: , , , ,


Heed justice Sakala’s call

Heed justice Sakala’s call
By The Post
Fri 01 July 2011, 04:00 CAT

There is no better place to settle electoral disputes than our courts of law. But so far, the courts cannot be said to have been a good place for settling election disputes, especially those involving the election of the president.

The inordinate delays in settling presidential election petitions have rendered our courts of law irrelevant in the settlement of electoral disputes involving the election of the president. These delays have made presidential election petitions academic.

It is either the courts find a quicker way of disposing of such petitions or the law is changed to ensure a speedy and fair settlement of presidential election petitions. In our system, the president is sworn in immediately after being announced winner by the Electoral Commission of Zambia. This puts the petitioner in a very disadvantaged legal position trying to undo what has already been done and trying to challenge someone who now, in some way, controls the appointments, promotions and remuneration of judges.

And this aside, experience has shown that by the time the matter is disposed of, the president whose election is being challenged may be way into his third or fourth year of the five-year term of office.

And somehow, this must have had a really huge bearing on our courts to allow the one who has been sworn in to remain president even if there are irregularities. Indeed, irregularities have been found in our election of the president. And our current Chief Justice, Ernest Sakala, in one presidential election petition against the election of Frederick Chiluba as president, disagreed with his fellow judges in the Supreme Court and had his own judgment finding Chiluba to have been irregularly elected. This was a very brave act on his part. But how many such brave acts against a sitting president have we seen since then, even from justice Sakala himself?

We agree with justice Sakala’s call on our judges countrywide to expeditiously deal with cases that will arise in their courts during and after this year’s elections. The political stability of our country will depend to a large extent on how well the judiciary handles election petitions. So far, our judiciary has not done very well. What has saved us is the restraint of our people and of our leaders.

In 2001, this country could have been in flames if Anderson Mazoka and others had not restrained their supporters from taking the law into their own hands. We all know that the election petition that followed from those elections was not expeditiously and efficiently handled by our courts of law.

The 2001 elections were clearly manipulated to give Levy Mwanawasa an undeserved electoral victory. And this came out in the testimonies of those who had managed those elections and now had fallen out with Levy. They told the court what they did to make Levy win. We had testimonies from Vernon Mwaanga, Xavier Chungu, who was intelligence chief at that time, among others. All these people came to show the court how they had manipulated things to ensure Levy’s victory. But the courts retained Levy as president.

Again in 2006, it took a lot of persuasion from Michael Sata to stop his supporters from taking the law into their own hands, challenging the re-election of Levy. On presidential elections, our people have lost hope and confidence in the ability of our judiciary to adjudicate such electoral disputes as and when they arise. Should we have the ruling party win by a small percentage, say of two per cent like it was in 2001, we may be headed for serious trouble, for veritable chaos. We say this because both our leaders and their supporters now don’t seem to believe that our courts of law can remove from State House, on account of electoral irregularities, a president who has already been sworn in by the Chief Justice.

Truly, justice Sakala is right when he says, “At the centre of these unfolding events will be our institution, the judiciary, whose integrity we have to protect if the legitimacy of our decisions is to be preserved and preserved it must be; if we are to remain relevant to the public that we serve”.

Justice Sakala further adds, “In carrying out these responsibilities, stakeholders place immense trust in the courts and their expectations are high.” Yes, the expectations of our people are high, but we don’t think our people still place immense trust in our courts. Our courts have in a very big way lost public trust because of being seen to be partial, incompetent and inefficient. The recent political cases against the late Frederick Chiluba have clearly demonstrated that our courts seriously lack independence from those occupying State House. And justice Sakala is right when he says, “There is no justice if the knowledge of the law is misapplied.” And this was the case in the matters involving Chiluba both in the magistrates’ court and the High Court. The acquittal of Chiluba in the magistrates’ court fits perfectly in what justice Sakala is saying. Similarly, the refusal by the High Court to register the London High Court judgment against Chiluba was another case of there being no justice “if the knowledge of the law is misapplied”. Here the knowledge of the law was clearly misapplied by the High Court judge hearing the matter. We agree with justice Sakala when he says that “an adjudicator has no independence in misdirecting himself or herself on points of law and an adjudicator has no independence in putting the judiciary into disrepute and an adjudicator has no independence to make mistakes or make wrong orders”. Again, we are seeing this in the civil cases where Chiluba was claiming, through some known agents, the return of properties seized by the state that he had bought with stolen public funds. The behaviour of our courts in these matters puts the judiciary into disrepute and shows a clear lack of independence on the part of our judiciary.

Justice Sakala is not saying all these things from without. These are matters that he knows very well have been happening, are happening in our judiciary. Justice Sakala is not trying to correct an imaginary problem. The problem is real and has gotten out of hand. On this point Justice Sakala deserves the support of all of us to heal what has become a very dangerous disease in our judiciary.

Genuine efforts to correct that which has gone wrong in our judiciary will deserve all our support. And all well-meaning Zambians should support justice Sakala when he puts his words into action, to match his words with deeds. This is a brave judge and we find it difficult to understand how the judiciary has degenerated and sunk so low under his leadership and supervision. Something has gone seriously wrong that the nation needs to understand. If the judiciary does not self-correct, there will be no other option but to politically correct it. This is a very important institution of the state that should never be allowed to sink this low because it endangers our political, social and economic stability – it threatens all the gains we have made as a nation, politically and otherwise. We need to see some serious changes in the operations of our judiciary.

Labels: ,


Mike endorses Sata

Mike endorses Sata
By Patson Chilemba
Fri 01 July 2011, 04:02 CAT

MIKE Mulongoti has endorsed the candidature of Michael Sata and the PF during this year’s tripartite elections. And Mulongoti says he has greatly suffered in his mission of defending the ideals of democracy and good governance in successive governments.

In a press statement, Mulongoti, who was dismissed as works and supply minister following his decision to challenge Vice-President George Kunda who was President Banda’s favoured choice for the MMD vice-presidency before the position was scrapped, stated that he did not need to be a rocket scientist to appreciate the strength of the PF and its leader Sata.

“I have today the 29th June of 2011 decided to make known to the people of Zambia that I am endorsing Mr Michael Chilufya Sata and his party PF as my choice for support in the forth coming tripartite elections. I am making this announcement conscious of the fact that it has far-reaching implications,” he stated.

Mulongoti stated that since he left the MMD and government he had been receiving calls to state his future, saying some charlatans had continued announcing his joining this or that party.
He stated that he had been shabbily treated in the MMD by some people who had no basis for being in the party in the first place.

“They represent the worst in political character and on reflection I feel shamed to have been associated with them. The MMD made a grave mistake that at admission to membership we did not pay attention to due diligence as we assumed that those admitted would have some modicum if not decency to respect our values and ideology,” Mulongoti stated. “To our surprise it was the proverbial ‘camel’ and the rest is history. I do not need to be a rocket scientist to appreciate the strength of PF and its leader Michael Sata. I can attest to this because we fought on the electoral front on many occasions and had it not been for the benefit of incumbency MMD would have been history today.”

Mulongoti stated that with the foreoing in mind, he wished to pledge his total support to the presidential candidature of Sata and all his candidates, saying he would now dedicate his energy and intellect to the fight to ensure a PF victory.

He stated that he did the same for MMD and it was now their time to lick the wounds after the eminent defeat.

Mulongoti stated that he was grateful for the wonderful and welcoming support from Sata, PF leaders and members in general even when they knew he was not one of their members but that they had a common agenda “to bring about change”.

“The greedy, selfish and dishonesty of a clique that have overthrown true MMD’s patriots in the MMD have given Zambia a bad name. The good people in leadership have been terrorised and confounded to numbness and appear helpless due to the level of intimidation from the powers that be,” Mulongoti stated. “Time for their liberation has come. I challenge them to come out of their cocoons to join the fight for building our cherished democracy. Their future is in their hands and continued silence and fear will do them more harm. They must not fear the unleashing of scavengers and their elk on them; it is only when they stand to this scum that they will earn respect and admiration from the people of Zambia.”

Mulongoti stated that history was replete with many leaders who had lost it on account of moral deficiency, avarice, greed, arrogance, vanity and being egoistic, saying the current situation in Zambia spoke volumes.

He said Zambians most of whom were poor were crying for change.

Mulongoti stated that the cry for change must not be misconstrued as to mean disrespect or demeaning to those in leadership.

“We have heard of developmental projects as if that is all there is to life. Governments the world over are expected to deliver on their promises. It is therefore warped thinking to believe that we have delivered before asking the beneficiaries whether they are satisfied with our performance,” Mulongoti stated. “It is for instance not enough to boast about projects when these steal the future of the same people they are intended to benefit.”

Mulongoti stated that for instance the people had continued to cry for the benefit from their natural resource more especially minerals, and that an attempt was made to bring equity through windfall taxes, but these were suspiciously removed by architects of poverty under the guise that they were encouraging and protecting investment.

“When the story is finally told it will be discovered that the political elite and the bureaucracy will have lined their pockets to deny to poor Zambians their fair share. It is surprising that the answers from the same investors point to the fact that they pay money to the leadership,” Mulongoti stated. “The perils of poverty must never be glossed over by those pretending to be providers of good things to the people. Why have the leadership not challenged these investors who continually give those answers to workers.”

He stated that the challenges of the moment were constitutional reform, fight against corruption, devolution of government to bring about equity, justice and its availability to the poor and less privileged, upholding the rule of law, adequate support to education and vocational training.
Mulongoti stated that with the current circumstances, it was only the PF which had the national appeal and support to bring about the desired change.

He stated that his assessment of other parties was that they were only useful for democratic purposes and could not be the promise for the future.

“I therefore call upon all citizens and all progressive Zambians to join me in supporting the PF and the candidacy of Mr C.M. Sata for President,” stated Mulongoti.

And speaking at a press briefing at hotel Edinburgh in Kitwe yesterday, Mulongoti said he was fired in the Second Republic for condemning the third term and President Banda also persecuted him for contesting the vice presidency in the MMD.

He said he did not hate President Rupiah Banda as a human being but the undemocratic tendencies he brought in the MMD.

Mulongoti said he would work closely with prominent individuals like Mbita Chitala to push the agenda for change of government because the country would collapse if the MMD were given chance to be in power for the next five years.

Mulongoti said his persecution in public by President Rupiah Banda and the subsequent expulsion from the party spoke volumes of how intolerant and undemocratic the party had been rendered.

“We were in Kasama with the President and I told him that I will contest for the position of vice-president. He gave me a go-ahead and assured me that my rights to contest would be respected and supported.

But the only thing he mentioned was that he will not support me in public because there was a serving vice-president. From that time... only to hear that I have been dropped.

Surely Zambia is a democracy and the tenets of democracy must be respected,” Mulongoti said.
He said the PF was the favourite party in the forthcoming elections because it had rich ideals that had given people hope of economic and political transformation.

Labels: , ,