Saturday, August 23, 2008

(HERALD) Dear Arthur: So long a letter to MDC-M

Dear Arthur: So long a letter to MDC-M

The real shock to Arthur Mutambara and Welshman Ncube is when they find themselves on American and EU sanctions list. It will not be long. Only then will they realise that you do not need to have committed any crime. You only need to have hurt the interests of the Emperors, namely the British, the Americans and the Europeans. And for the two, the crime gets even more tenuous and baffling.

They are not in Government and thus are incapable of materially committing this great abomination against the Deity. But the punishment will be just as vicious. Their real crime is one of perforating the fig leaf that hides the Emperor’s sacred nakedness. Now the head of the Emperor’s thing has been exposed where there are people! You do not get away with that kind of embarrassment. You pay heavily. You pay double.

Democracy’s supposed votaries

Already shunned by political donors as a way of coercing them back into a violent marriage, MDC-Mutambara now faces a new threat by way of a vicious campaign to de-legitimise it as an opposition. This new dimension is real, again driving home the Manichean nature of our politics: you are either Zanu-PF or MDC; Mugabe or Tsvangirai. You cannot be a Mutambara, a Shumba, a Semwayo. You cannot be anything else, which is why Mutambara’s bid to claim the space of an arbiter which the supposedly supreme voter gave his party, is proving very dangerous and possibly politically fatal.

We do not have a national opposition; we have a Zanu-PF antipode. The culture in the opposition realm is as repressive and as intolerant as the opposition charges against Zanu-PF. Either way, the voter say has no place, which is why the voter verdict of power sharing as opposed to power transfer, is being rejected by democracy’s supposed monks. It is not the place which the voter gives you which matters; it is the veto which the fishmongers wield to defend their interests as an imperial collegiate which matters.

Against fact, numbers and the law

And the fishmongers demand power shift, power transfer and nothing less. For this goal they are prepared and able to be unreasonable. The results of March 29 polls – which results until now they were rejecting – are what they are hanging on to. And in their view, those results provide a basis for power transfer. Just how?

Well, Tsvangirai won, they declare rather viciously, well against fact and numbers. Well, the results concluded the electoral process, they again declare, this time against our law and their own practices back home. Come to think of it, many current leaders of Europe and America are by-products of run-offs, foremost Merkel and Sarkozy themselves dedicated denouncers of Zimbabwe’s electoral process. Brown does not come into the radar at all. He does not need the British vote to govern. No one elected him, that very un-handsome man. He pilfered the crown, something not quite unknown to the British, right from the Elizabethan days. But many of his peers were sired by run-offs.

So it cannot be a question of ignorance in Europe and in America. I said they are speaking against fact and numbers. Yes, they are. The total vote for the legislature comprises the upper and lower houses. When brought together, the March results give Zanu-PF a commanding lead. Plain lead, too plain to be missed by anyone who is not Tsvangirai. What is the story then? Zanu-PF controls the legislature, indeed has the popular vote.

Finalising the hung result

I do not need to talk about Presidential where the argument is plain. McGee went to drag Tsvangirai back from South Africa to participate in the run-off precisely because America knew the March result was inconclusive. Those polls gave Tsvangirai a marginal lead over President Mugabe. But it did not decide the matter. Nothing at law or in common sense justifies a hung result. Everything in law and common sense cries out for a sequel. After all, it is impossible to have a hung result, and Tsvangirai and his masters knew as much. Tsvangirai did not boycott the run-off.

He dropped off the run-off, and there is a huge difference between the two. Withholding participation in the run-off, while clearly not making legal sense, would have placed on some plinth of arguable decency the proposition which the MDC and its backers are belatedly invoking, with the wisdom of prophets of hindsight.

Then the argument would have centred on the accuracy of the March 29 result. They did not do so, could not do so, in fact. Such a stance would not wash given that, like all previous polls, the result was not just accurate; it underpinned an immaculate poll process. Additionally, so consumed were they with the sense of an irreversible voter mind shift that they saw the result from the run-off as fated to go one way, indeed as foregone. A whitewash awaited Mugabe and his Zanu-PF, they reasoned.

They never budgeted for a dramatic turnaround as indeed hit them later. The fact that Tsvangirai joined in the run-off acknowledges and underlines the inconclusive nature of March 29. And he did it at the behest of the whole Western world, including the British who sent McGee to bell the cat, in order to hide their vested interest in the whole matter.

Deserving to govern, building a nation

The fact that Tsvangirai dropped off a mere five days before the poll underlines a rare whiff of commonsense which hit him a few days before his Waterloo. He correctly read defeat and opted out. This is permissible in a democratic process, as is also the phenomenon of a loser who builds face-saving arguments as a result. Such as blaming your pull-out on violence while accepting by-election victories emanating from the same process and held under the same conditions.

That Zanu-PF agrees to mediation and a power-sharing deal after its own victory, should never be taken to indicate self-doubt with the mandate given it, or the process yielding it. The swearing-in process underlined this deep and just belief in the validity of the process, the deservedness of the responsibility to govern.

Acceptance of mediation and power sharing that followed, underlined a trait and a realisation. Through this magnanimous gesture, Zanu-PF emblazoned its trait as a nation-builder, indeed as a party able and prepared to transcend the inter-party bickering and competition upon which the notion of democracy rests. It expressed the volition to abridge, truncate and share its hard-won mandate for a higher national good.

Its name is British, American, European

Through this gesture, Zanu-PF correctly acknowledged the crisis bedevilling Zimbabwe is essentially exogenous. Its name is British. Its name is European. It is American. It is called sanctions, fundamentally premised on a dispute that has nothing to do with MDC, the ballot, March 29 or June 27. All these remain mere pretexts to what is essentially an outward conflict that seeks legitimacy in local colour. In a way, it is right to say MDC is threatened by any settlement with Zanu-PF. It is, particularly that faction of it which is un-national and externally oriented.

That is the faction which is led by Morgan Tsvangirai. The one led by Mutambara represents fitful national consciousness, but one getting increasingly more clearly defined and directional. Between Zanu-PF and any opposition which is national, there can never be a Chinese wall. But between a surrogate MDC on the one hand, Zanu-PF or any opposition party which is national in outlook on the other, there can only be a whole turbulent ocean, abutted by a reinforced Chinese wall.

Mutambara puts a lie to claims that MDC-T is made to look a puppet by Zanu-PF propaganda. Mutambara puts a lie to the British propaganda claims that nothing good or redeemable motivates Zanu-PF beyond its cynical wish to rule forever exclusively. Therein lies the challenge to Mutambara’s MDC faction.

Making a choice

In trying to carve a niche for itself, MDC-M should not hesitate to be likened to Zanu-PF on the national question, the same way it should not hesitate to be likened to MDC-T on the so-called democratisation project. Zanu-PF does not agree with MDC-M’s neo-liberal sense of democracy, never will. But it deeply respects undirected spurts of national consciousness which are so disgustingly absent in the other MDC. And Mutambara and Ncube must not fear to be likened to Zanu-PF on that one matter. In defiance of circumstances of birth, the Mutambara faction is steering away from powerful external handlers. That is formidable, as Zanu-PF will quickly attest. Yet that is what will make the opposition national and genuine.

And persecuted too. In fact, the coming weeks will force MDC-M to make a choice between Zanu-PF and MDC-T. They will have to be sworn in Parliament, which is not a challenge. They will have to decide on a position regarding the Speakership, which Zanu-PF will kill to get.

Hey, they will have to say whether or not they are ready to play a direct role in an inclusive Government. While a tripartite agreement is certainly welcome, MDC-M will decide in a political environment where it may not yet be available. Or even possible. To baulk at joining would suggest they are a junior party to MDC-T, apart from underscoring the fact that they still stand beholden to external forces whose positive rating they will be out to win.

False threat of split

They cannot worry about an internal split arising from this question. Their rebel MPs, if any do exist, would have to face a series of by-elections in which MDC-M and Zanu-PF will be collaborating against MDC-T, presumably the new home for those rebels. Not a single seat will come back to those rebels and MDC-T. MDC-T cannot face an election, any election at that.

About that I am certain. To join Government will mean MDC-M will share the fate of Zanu-PF, and that means joining the sanctions list and the unremitting censure from the West. But the argument for Zimbabwe, which is an argument against the West and its hidden interests, will have won, in the process creating a huge step forward towards an honourable resolution of the national question. While Ncube and Mutambara may be reviled by the present highly polarised politics, history will absolve them, indeed accord them a place of honour as honest and independent men who refused someone else’s drum, against the dance of their own people.

A key or keyhole?

I notice one bald writer — a something Makwanya — thinks Tsvangirai holds key. He does not. He is the hole into which the key disappears. The key is with Britain and America, a reality which was driven home at Sandton City, South Africa. What frustrated Sadc heads, apart, of course, from Tsvangirai’s all-round ignorance, was how the whole MDC-T team could never give answers on anything without asking "for time to reflect". That included on a simple question like what time of day is it, Cde MDC-T!

On any matter put to them, the team would ask for recess, which meant going back to their hotel rooms for new instructions from London and Washington. It was despicable. It was embarrassing, with one South African official quipping: "Judging by the conduct of Mr Tsvangirai, I have no doubt that Zimbabweans are a determined people!" He was referring to Tsvangirai’s obduracy, even against commonsensical positions. MDC-T has no mind of its own, which is why unexpected shifts expose them, such as the opening of Parliament.

Contradictions in the camp could not have been more glaring. As with his party, Tsvangirai has no mind of his own. He is as good as the last man or woman he spoke to, and such people make very dangerous puppets. And they cannot be the key; only poor holes where clever keys penetrate. The man is being raped in broad daylight, at the Station. British rapist.

Puffing up Morgan’s pride

So what is the game plan? It is a very simple one. Diplomatically, Zimbabwe won. Its verdict that power must be shared was upheld by Sadc. President Thabo Mbeki won. His blueprint for power sharing was adopted by the region and is now recognised by the AU. President Mugabe won on several fronts. Against a bleak backdrop, he once again has Africa behind him, all engineered from Sadc. President Kikwete made the point: the powers which Tsvangirai is getting from the deal are far above what Odinga enjoys in Kenya.

He spoke with the authority of the man who brokered the deal. Unconfirmed reports say Odinga himself told Tsvangirai as much. As also did Botswana which made a surprising U-turn at the summit. The Nigerians flew in to persuade Tsvangirai against rejecting a good deal.

Yet such ministrations gave Tsvangirai a convoluted sense of centrality in the resolution of the Zimbabwe question. The issue cannot be about how power was partitioned in the agreement.

The governance issue has fallen away, and with it, the principal grievance of both MDCs, if they are ever to be believed. What remains, and stolidly so, is the twin desire to demolish Zanu-PF and its leader as infra

structure of a liberation ethos which the West wants extirpated from highly mineralised Southern Africa. This is the outstanding matter to which Tsvangirai is a minor. Now President Mugabe can expose the real enemy, the real culprits behind the deadlock, and the Trojan horse in front of that stalemate. This is key to keep Africa behind him while ensuring a consolidated position at home. Declining support at home and a reviled profile on the continent is about it Zanu-PF requires for now. After Sandton, the propaganda image of Mugabe as a megalomania will be harder to validate, the same way the image of Tsvangirai as an incipient and possibly incompetent Jonas Savimbi will be harder to dodge. Maybe Tsvangirai has overplayed his hand.

Structures of the war ahead

But the West will play its economy card, and I notice there is a convergence of thoughts on this one matter. Even Tsvangirai makes the same point that he does not need Zimbabweans and their vote. He only needs greater sanctions from Europe and America, to engineer power transfer. Let it be so. It is important for Zimbabweans to know and understand what is really hurting them, in order to be able to fight it, whether politically or economically. And the more we stretch events is the more the West’s pretences wear thin. The British and Americans are giving Zimbabwe less than 60 days to collapse. We need Government, a strong Government, which will take bold decisions without flinching. Globally, developments pitting Russia against Nato present real opportunities. Back home, the mature realisation that the enemy within needs to be handled conclusively, will help. Structures of war – economic war – are needed and will come shortly. As will leadership. In the few months it will become apparent whether or not the revolution can or cannot defend itself. By any means necessary.

After reading Kanengoni

Oh Alexander Kanengoni! I really enjoyed your piece, including the snide reference to Manheru. You have this knack for exploring a complex question in such a plain and light-hearted way. The central plank of your thesis was that maybe the trouble between Zimbabwe and Britain is too much love and sameness (not similarity), not too much mutual hatred and differences. We are thoroughly British, are we not, you declared, forgetting though that evidence of this incurable British-ness included your very piece declaring so, again in perfect English! Soon after, I had a muscular debate with my two daughters, both in high school. I had made your piece a highly recommended read in the home, and the two daughters, faithful to instructions, obliged. "But daddy, how would we be heard by the world if we do not speak in English?" cried one, with a clear nod of approval from the other. I flung my hands in despair, prayerfully hoping that you, Alexander, were not somewhere in the eaves to watch yet another layer of British-ness in Manheru’s very home. It is terrible. Desperate to convince, I told my two unlistening daughters China which has 1,3 billion souls, speaks Mandarin, speaks broken and halting English. Why won’t you study it to get to that vast portion of humanity, I challenged them, stressing their real argument has nothing to do with the world, only with the English-speaking part of it. You talk as if speaking English is the crime, I added, again sensing the vulnerability of my argument. The trouble is thinking English, to which the English dropping so effortlessly from our twisted tongues is but a symptom. Alexander, I lost the argument in the home. I cannot win it in the world either, which is why I look elsewhere for succour. Everywhere I hear English, British English. That means the British personality will never set!

The English Department that once was

You have broached a matter that nearly split the "English Department" at UZ in the early eighties. Was it an English Department or a Department of Literature in English? We could not get it right, beginning with the very label on our foreheads, itself an identity marker. Four years later, I limped out of that Department, a perfect human specimen of that unresolved question. In between, we could not have Micere Mugo, the firebrand writer-scholar who spearheaded Kenya’s challenge to the dominance of England in literature departments across the continent. In between we fed on all English – from its old, unreadable form as in Sir Gawain and the Green Knights, right up to its deliberately subverted and broken form as is Amos Tutuola’s Palm-wine Drinkard. I ate all that book, in order to be a capped graduate from the English Department. A furious debate was detonated when someone, apparently supported by Dr Chivaura and Dr Gecau (another Kenyan!) daringly suggested Shakespeare must be scrapped from the syllabus. My goodness, what an abomination! A real desecration of literature! Was Shakespeare not the father of literature? How dare you suggest that? The liberal Dr Chennels was prepared to migrate to apartheid South Africa, all for the sake of Shakespeare!

I hope Joram Nyathi now does . . .

Until much later into adulthood and amidst this bruising fight with the British, I would not understand this whole furore. I hope Joram Nyathi of the Independent now does. (He was a year behind, a student of a BA General, with English, sorry Literature in English, as a major). The debate followed and haunted my professional phase. Two degrees with UZ. Two degrees with UNISA. One lonely degree with a British university I shall not mention. Verdict: "the British-trained Manheru"! With four degrees from Africa? Why is one more than four? Because it’s a British one? We have a long way to go.

The story of Caliban

But there are a myriad ways out of this trap of British-ness and maybe I illustrate one such, taking after British Shakespeare’s Caliban. You should know, Alexander, that Caliban stands for an archetypal native awaiting to be discovered and developed by a white "pioneer" colonialist. Such as happened to the Kanengonis when the "Pioneer" Column came into the vast, empty space that we are said to have been before 1890. So Caliban who inherits this unnamed island (does it have to have a name given the placeness of colonial assaults on the Third World?) from Sycorax, his mother, helps a shipwrecked white-man called Prospero survive the shipwreck, and to thrive afterwards. As part of this package of fatal hospitality, Caliban shows Prospero the riches of the island, in the process exciting the annexationist urge in Prospero. Sooner, Caliban not only loses control of the island; he is reduced to a chattel, and has to draw water and hew wood. One day, feeling both quite fed up and libidinous, Caliban attempts to rape Miranda, a supposed beautiful daughter of Prospero. The attempted rape is both an expression of natural human urge and of resistance. Above all, it puts Caliban on the same human plane as Prospero and Miranda, something quite odious to Prospero. Sexuality would have humanised Caliban, much against furious denial of the new white master.

Hewing tools of protest from British-ness

Expectedly, Prospero is furious at this attempted violation and he threatens Caliban with gnawing goblins which he controls through his black magic. Caliban will not be intimidated this time and stands up to Prospero, who is quick to remind him he found him a mute monster "on whose nature nurture would not stick". I even gave you a language, adds bragging Prospero. Caliban wastes no time to cut in: "And my profit is I now know how to curse you." What follows is an excellent nationalist credo, with Caliban declaring the island his by aboriginal inheritance. Alexander, that, in summary, is what I have sought to do with this column: curse the British Prospero; kiss his beautiful daughter, nay attempt to seed her, to assert my claim and humanity. You chose a different path. You went to war and shot them dead. And as you did, we as collaborators sang: "Zvamunoona vakomana bhunu rinofa/Toridze mbira dzekumatongo!" It was through dying that the Boers regained their humanity, after a near-century of self-deification that spawned frightening halo and myth of impregnability that had to be broken by fighters like you. For that I thank you and your fighting peers. But the battle is not yet won, continues to shift to more complex forms, Alexander. Albion is near, breathing heavily on us. There are many ways of fighting Alexander, including – as Chinua Achebe would remind you and me – the course taken by the tired, abused and very angry Negro after a thankless working day in a white-owned sugarcane estate. In frustration, he seized his white master’s stolen trumpet, blew it like it was never blown before, and the result was jazz! So, weep not child.


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GART calls for promotion of Guar gum

GART calls for promotion of Guar gum
By Fridah Zinyama
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:00]

THE Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust (GART) has said there is need to promote cash crops like Guar gum in the country if poverty in rural areas is to be eradicated. And National Network Project on Arid Legumes in India Dr Devender Kumar said certain cash crops like Guar gum are very important to the improvement of people's livelihood.

Guar gum is a water-soluble paste made from the seeds of the guar plant and has multi-purposes in that it can be used as a thickener and stabiliser in foods and pharmaceuticals.

During the promotion of Guar gum to stakeholders at Pamodzi Hotel on Thursday, Dr Stephen Muliokela said Guar gum was an important crop which GART was promoting in the country.

"It is also commonly sold as a herbal supplement to promote weight loss. The largest market for guar gum is in the food industry, where it is used as a thickener and binder of free water in sauces, salad dressings, ice creams, instant noodles, pet foods, processed meats, bread improvers and beverages," Dr Muliokela said. "Industrial applications of guar gum include its use in the textile, paper, explosives, mining and pharmaceutical industries."

He added that GART had already carried out trials in certain parts of the country to see how the yield rates and tests had already been carried out in food industry.

And Dr Kumar said Guar gum was a very useful crop with multiple uses.

"Guar provides nutritious fodder and concentrate to the livestock sector," he said. "It is a rich source of crude protein."

Dr Kumar said Guar can be used in different industries in the country and it was a good crop for both small and large farmers to grow due to its usefulness.

There is a ready market for it on the international market and the farmers can be assured of a ready market for their product.

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Zambia headed for emerging market status, observes IMF

Zambia headed for emerging market status, observes IMF
By Joan Chirwa
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:00]

ZAMBIA is among seven other countries in sub-Saharan Africa that are headed towards emerging market status, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has established.

David Nellor of the IMF's African department stated that eight sub-Saharan countries that met the criteria for an emerging market status were benchmarked against the founding members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which were among the early emerging markets identified by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) - a financing arm of the World Bank.

Nellor stated that the criteria for an emerging market, which include private sector led growth and investible markets, were identified in the eight sub-Saharan African countries, Zambia inclusive.

"Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia have been earmarked for emerging market status. Together, these countries account for about 40 per cent of the region's population outside South Africa and almost one-half of its GDP," stated Nellor in the September issue of IMF's Finance and Development magazine. "This group of African countries compares favourably with the ASEAN countries of 1980.

ASEAN was already experiencing strong economic growth in 1980 but, in many other areas, the ASEAN countries looked quite different than they do today - and the African candidates perhaps have lower vulnerability and greater economic stability than the ASEAN countries had in 1980."

The IMF notes that successful emerging market countries feature the private sector as the engine of growth, irrespective of their form of economic organisation.

"Institutional investors want to have confidence that policy will continue to support private sector development and that private property rights will be protected; here they share the interests of foreign direct investors," stated Nellor.

"Africa generally fares poorly in measures of the attractiveness of the business environment, and this makes the continent a less attractive destination for investors. Stronger performance in this area is likely to be well rewarded with additional investment."



Mutati happy with Phoenix Supplies,SA firm venture

Mutati happy with Phoenix Supplies,SA firm venture
By Kabanda Chulu
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:00]

COMMERCE minister Felix Mutati has described the joint venture between Phoenix Supplies of Ndola and the HBW Group of South Africa as practical demonstration of regional integration within SADC. The two companies have signed agreements to develop a US$ 160 million multi-facility shopping mall in the Chambishi Multi Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ).

Mutati said during the recently held Southern African Development Community (SADC) meeting, Zambia show-cased various economic and development models which investors within the region looked at.

He also said the Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) together with other regional farmers' organisations shared experiences on contract buying, warehouse receipting and how the current food crisis could be turned into opportunities.

"We took various models from many local entities such as NAPSA, National Building Society, ZNFU, among others, and fortunately enough, the model from Phoenix Supplies attracted the interest from property developers, the HBW Group of South Africa, which indicated intentions to enter into a joint venture to set up a shopping mall worth U$160 million in the Chambishi MFEZ, which is a practical demonstration of regional integration within the SADC," Mutati said.

"HBW Group is currently finalising financial agreements and soon they will embark on feasibility studies and submit the environmental impact assessment with construction expected to start early next year."

The Chambishi MFEZ would become the second business venture in Zambia after the Manda Hill Shopping Centre where the HBW Group would undertake operations.

Last year, HBW Group Limited took over the management of Manda Hill Centre from the Commonwealth Africa Investments (CAI) and Zambia Venture Capital Fund (ZVCF) and committed US$ 20 million to uplift the shopping mall.

The HBW Group also ruled out possibilities of razing the current building to develop a three-storey structure because the foundation was not strong enough. Instead they intend to transform the centre into a more multi-purpose mall by having various facilities.



Political chameleons

Political chameleons
By Editor
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:00]

President Levy Mwanawasa fought a noble battle and lived his life in pursuit of a better life for all of us. The democracy in which we will burry him and honour him on September 3 is the sweet fruit of his life of honesty, of struggle against vices and indeed of sacrifice.

We have been listening to many people comment on the passing of Levy. Most of our people are truly and genuinely grieved. A dark cloud of sadness has descended over our land. This seems to have caused many people to stop and think.

It seems crises generate ideas. And Levy’s death, a big crisis for our country and our people, is generating ideas.

Most of our people seem to be thinking very clearly. They know what they don’t want and more importantly, they know what they want.

Anybody following the proceedings of national mourning on any medium today has to agree that one theme has crystallised. Our people are demanding continuity of Levy’s legacy.

They don’t want the gains and benefits that have been achieved during Levy’s presidency to go with him, to be reversed.

This is not a wrong aspiration, it is a correct one. Our people have every right to expect the best from their government. They have the right to expect honesty and integrity from their government.

These two qualities have consistently come out as we have continued to mourn Levy. As the discussion starts on who should succeed Levy, a question needs to be asked: what is Levy’s legacy? And who amongst his colleagues and political opponents is best placed to carry forward that legacy?

This is a general question that the ordinary person who is demanding continuity should ask. But those who were close to Levy, those who worked with him daily and respect and value his leadership, have another question to answer.

If they respected his leadership and valued his aspirations, it is not wrong for them to ask what Levy’s wish was.

We cannot for a minute suggest that Levy was infallible or his wishes and aspirations the best. But those who worked with him have a duty, a moral obligation to examine his choice. If they are going to discard his wishes, they have to do so very carefully.

It is clear that Levy had very clear thoughts about leadership. He was also clear on who should and who should not succeed him. He also had a very clear preference. This is part of his legacy.

Those who are talking about continuity and respecting Levy’s legacy cannot be honest about this endeavour and yet ignore his wishes. Dipak Patel has raised an interesting issue which, in the context of intra-party politics, should not be dismissed.

If Levy expressed a clear wish and the people would want to depart from it, they need to be clear why. They also need to address the question of why Levy expressed that preference in the first place. It will not do, to use Levy’s language, to ignore Levy and his guidance, even before he is buried, out of political opportunism.

If Levy said no to certain practices and consequently ruled out certain leaders, we will have every reason to be worried if people start choosing leaders who will help them do things that Levy would not have allowed.

This would be nothing less than criminal conspiracy to defraud our people of their achievements and turn us back to the dark days of plunder, abuse of office and violation of human rights as was the case under Frederick Chiluba.

Levy had decided and chosen to run a government of laws and not men, as he used to say. He had chosen to fight corruption even within his own government; something which did not always make him popular given the fact that our politics, since the Chiluba days, have been dominated by corruption, greed and vanity.

Levy was prepared to risk his very political survival to fight corruption. His government took on fights with political heavyweights to rid our country of corruption, even when it could have made him lose an election. We saw how in 2006 – not too long ago – the plunderers regrouped and went for Levy.

They ratcheted the political temperature and pinned Levy on the ropes. He was fighting for his political survival and it would have been very easy for him to compromise with the plunderers. But he chose to fight on and not to compromise with them in any way.
It cannot be disputed that the last presidential and parliamentary elections were probably the best elections that this country has ever held.

The contest was high and difficult. The temptation for the sitting government to manipulate things was there. But Levy chose the honest path. Our police seemed to enjoy a lot of freedom in facilitating the campaign activities of all the players.

The opposition were as free as the ruling party to hold their campaign meetings. Levy was determined to win or lose that election in a clean way. This is the legacy that he has left – a legacy of honesty, integrity, sincerity and true patriotism. Once again, politically and morally, Levy made Zambians feel proud to be Zambians.

On the economic front, Levy was not different. He did not hide his decisions. Even when we did not agree with him, we had to respect his convictions and determination to achieve certain economic milestones. He was ready to take politically risky economic decisions when he believed they would benefit our people.

It is not too long ago that Levy announced increased taxation in the mining companies. This was a very difficult decision, one that required a lot of courage and conviction. But he did it. There are some politicians in this country today who change their positions on important issues every day for political expedience, to feather their nests.

One day, they will say that the mines are not taxed enough and the next, they will say ‘why are you taxing the mines so much?’

In the morning, they will join a protest, saying ‘don’t sell Zanaco and in the evening they will be saying ‘it’s ok’. If Zambia is going to go forward, we still need principled leadership, not political chameleons who stand for nothing but their aspiration to get to State House.

They will try to manipulate everything and everyone to try and get into power.
Political chameleons come in two major forms.

The first is the one we have just described. The politician who keeps changing his position to suit his audience – a political demagogue, an opportunist. The other type is the one who has no position.

He never takes a clear position on anything. He quietly blends with the environment to cheat, manipulate and deceive the people around him into believing he is one of them. He too is still an opportunist.

He is just as harmful as the first but is capable of making people believe he is harmless. But we know that such manipulators, such opportunists have never deserved anybody’s respect or been successful anywhere.

Manipulators are like little sailboards that go with the wind and the waves. Manipulation is synonymous with opportunism.

Manipulation doesn’t have substance; it doesn’t have roots. We think everything – respect, relationships, serious analysis, and understanding – is only possible among people who are honest with themselves and others.

As we look at Levy’s legacy and as those concerned decide who is going to carry it forward, one thing is clear: political chameleons will not carry forward Levy’s vision. Only principled leadership will.



Zambians need fair elections, says Rupiah

Zambians need fair elections, says Rupiah
By Noel Sichalwe
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:01]

VICE-President Rupiah Banda yesterday said Zambians cherish their freedom and need fair elections. Vice-President Banda also said the nation looked forward to the leadership of newly appointed Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) chairperson justice Florence Mumba during the presidential by-elections to be held within 90 days.

And justice Mumba yesterday described her appointment as a mammoth task.
Swearing in justice Mumba as ECZ chairperson and Marvin Mwanamwambwa as Supreme Court judge at Government House, Vice-President Banda said justice Mumba was the right person to head ECZ.

"I am pleased to perform this auspicious function to swear you as chairperson of the Electoral Commission of Zambia. You are well known in the judiciary circles, not only in Zambia and Africa but in the world as you served in the Hague and many other places. The Electoral Commission of Zambia is not a new terrain for you.

You have been there before," Vice-President Banda said. "As you know, the people of Zambia cherish their freedom and need fair elections. You are the right person. As you know, we are going to go into elections soon within the next 90 days and we are looking forward to your leadership during this period.

I am particularly honoured to swear you on behalf of the people of Zambia because the President knew exactly what he was doing when he chose you and I am honoured to be the one to perform this function."

In an interview after being sworn in, justice Mumba said running ECZ was a mammoth task and hoped the nation would support her.

"Today is not for speeches but for thanking God for the appointment," she said.
Vice-President Banda also said judge Mwanamwambwa was a well-known person who has been in the judiciary for a long time. He said judge Mwanamwambwa's elevation to the Supreme Court was natural.

"I would like to encourage you to continue to work hard as you have always done in the past. Your elevation to the Supreme Court is a clear indication of the confidence that the judiciary and our late President had in you. I am happy to be the one to carry out this function and that you are a valuable addition to the judiciary," he said.

The ceremony was attended by many Supreme Court and High Court judges and a few Cabinet ministers.

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MMD asks presidential aspirants to apply before August 26

MMD asks presidential aspirants to apply before August 26
By Patson Chilemba in Lusaka and Mutuna Chanda in Kitwe
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:01]

THE MMD has asked members wishing to contest the party presidency to lodge in their application letters before August 26 with the secretariat. And Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) president Elijah Banda said Zambians should be looking for a leader who will add to the virtues of President Levy Mwanawasa when the country goes to the polls.

In an interview yesterday, Tetamashimba said the party's national executive committee (NEC) resolved after their meeting on Thursday that members should be given a chance to contest party presidency. He said NEC chairperson for legal affairs Bwalya Chiti explained provisions of the MMD constitution.

Tetamashimba said the NEC would sit on September 5 to elect a presidential candidate for the presidential by-election to be held in less than 90 days.

"People must start applying between today and 26th August, 2008. They can apply through the national secretary that they want to be considered to stand as presidential candidate," Tetamashimba said.

"Anybody who is a member, who has been in the party for not less than two to three years can apply and must satisfy the conditions of Article 34 (3) of the national Constitution. On the issue of the convention, there is no time. So what happened was that both the constitution of the Republic and the party were explained to us in NEC and so, democracy demands giving anybody chance."

But NEC sources said the August 26 deadline was just by party national secretary Katele Kalumba’s suggestion which was not agreed upon in principle. The source said the deadline would not be binding because people could file in their applications after August 26 and still be adopted for the presidency.

Meanwhile, Tetamashimba said that NEC agreed to respect President Levy Mwanawasa's wish to be buried at his Palabana farm on the outskirts of Lusaka, and not Heroes Square.
And reacting to Dipak Patel's statement that finance minister Ng'andu Magande was the most suited candidate, Tetamashimba said non MMD members like Patel should not tell the party which candidates were better.

And in an interview yesterday, Banda said the benefit of President Mwanawasa's hardline stance against corruption and his insistence on good governance was there for all to see.
"The legacy that President Mwanawasa has left is clear," Banda said.

"He's left a legacy of a government that is wholly dedicated to the rule of law, justice, good governance and these have been shown in his commitment towards fighting corruption and fiscal discipline in government spending. Going forward, the country will be looking for a leader who will add to those virtues and take them to a higher level and that is what President Mwanawasa would have loved."

He said taking away from the legacy that President Mwanawasa had left would reverse the country's economic gains made during his tenure.

"The profile that President Mwanawasa left is good enough precedent even for those that have remained in his party to follow," Banda said.

And Banda said it is within Vice-President Rupiah Banda's powers to defer assenting to the bills to increase salaries for constitutional office holders.

Banda said Vice-President Banda, who is Acting President, could choose whether or not to assent to the amendment acts that increase salaries for constitutional office holders or wait until after the transition period of the presidency.

"The Acting President assumes all the functions of head of state and this does not only relate to assenting to legislation relating to emoluments of constitutional office holders but to any other legislation that is brought to him," said Banda.

"As to whether this will be an appropriate time for him to assent to the acts given the extended period of mourning, it will be left to him to judge. It is up to him to determine whether he'll assent to the legislation during the transition period or will wait until after the transition...Considering the public sentiments against the said laws, it's within his powers to defer assenting to the legislation."

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UPND fields HH for presidential by-election

UPND fields HH for presidential by-election
By Chibaula Silwamba
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:00]

THE opposition United Party for National Development (UPND) yesterday announced that its leader Hakainde Hichilema will be the party's presidential candidate in the forthcoming by-election. UPND spokesperson Charles Kakoma announced Hichilema's candidature in a media statement issued in Lusaka.

"Following the assurance by the justice minister Honourable George Kunda that there would be a presidential by-election in accordance with the Constitution, the UPND
wishes to announce that it will be participating in this by-election," Kakoma stated. "UPND will field Mr Hakainde Hichilema as the presidential candidate."

He urged all UPND members, civil society organisations and all citizens to rally behind Hichilema whom he said offered a ray of hope for real change.

"He is an economic manager who will change the lives of Zambians for the better," Kakoma stated.

He stated that the UPND called upon all well-meaning Zambians to remain calm and peaceful as they mourned President Mwanawasa with dignity and respect.

The announcement of Hichilema's candidature brings to an end speculation that the UPND leader and opposition Patriotic Front (PF) leader Michael Sata were planning to form an electoral pact ahead of the presidential by-election.

Justice minister George Kunda on Thursday assured that a presidential by-election would be held within 90 days after the death of President Mwanawasa.

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'UPND, PF’s liaison doesn't amount to electoral pact'

'UPND, PF’s liaison doesn't amount to electoral pact'
By Patson Chilemba
Saturday August 23, 2008 [04:00]

OPPOSITION UPND spokesperson Charles Kakoma has said his party's cooperation with Patriotic Front (PF) does not amount to an electoral pact. Commenting on the recent statement that PF was pushing for an electoral pact in the event of a presidential by-election, Kakoma stated that his party had made a decision to cooperate with other political parties and progressive civil society organisations to solve common problems affecting the nation such as poverty and the controversial increments of salaries and allowances for Cabinet ministers and others.

He said it was public knowledge that UPND held a public rally with PF, civil society organisations and thousands of other Zambians to express their disagreement with the salary and allowance increments.

"In the past, we have engaged ourselves in similar activities such as the fight against the third term in 2001 and the constitution debate which has been going on for a long time, culminating into the current National Constitutional Conference (NCC)," Kakoma stated.

"Such cooperation and unity with other opposition parties and civil society organisations does not amount to electoral pacts or alliances but rather speaking and acting for the disadvantaged citizens."

Recently, informed PF sources said the party was pushing for an electoral pact with UPND in the event of a presidential by-election.

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(TALKZIMBABWE, REUTERS) Hunyani bridge 'bombed'

Hunyani bridge 'bombed'
Fri, 22 Aug 2008 19:25:00 +0000

ZIMBABWEAN police said on Friday there had been an attempt to blow up a road and rail bridge on one of the country's major highways near Harare. Police spokesman Wayne Bvudzijena said in a statement: "There was an attempt to bomb the Hunyani rail and road bridges along the Harare-Bulawayo route last night. Both bridges suffered minimum damage and remained intact and useable."

"Investigations are in progress. Security forces remain on high alert."

He declined to comment on possible suspects and the motive for the attack, or whether it was linked to political tension in the country.

Zimbabwe's ruling Zanu PF and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change called on their supporters to end political violence in the country earlier this month.

The two parties began power-sharing talks in July following President Robert Mugabe's re-election in a widely condemned June poll, boycotted by the opposition.


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It's a great loss to SADC, Mugabe mourns Levy

It's a great loss to SADC, Mugabe mourns Levy
By George Chellah, Christopher Miti and Mwala Kalaluka
Friday August 22, 2008 [04:00]

THE death of President Levy Mwanawasa is a great loss to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, President Robert Mugabe has said. And Malawian President Bingu wa Mutharika described the late President Mwanawasa as a great son of Africa whose advice, wisdom and contribution to finding a lasting solution to peace and prosperity in the SADC region would always be cherished.

President Mugabe expressed his sympathies in a message of condolences addressed to Zambia’s Vice-President Rupiah Banda on Wednesday evening.

He said Zimbabwe shares Zambia’s sorrow during this period of bereavement and mourning.

President Mugabe said the death of President Mwanawasa was a great loss not only to the people of Zambia but to SADC, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern African (COMESA) region and the entire African continent.

"It is with profound shock and sorrow that I learnt of the untimely death of our dear brother and colleague, His Excellency President Levy Mwanawasa," said President Mugabe. "On behalf of the government and people of Zimbabwe, and on my own behalf, I would like to convey to you, to the Mwanawasa family, as well as to the government and people of the Republic of Zambia, sincere and heartfelt condolences.
"May his soul rest in eternal peace. Please accept, Honourable Vice- President, the expression of our deepest sympathies."

And in his message of condolences released by Malawi's State House and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to Vice-President Banda, President Wa Mutharika said he had learnt with deep shock, sorrow and grief about the death of President Mwanawasa at a military hospital in Paris, France on Tuesday.

He said the death of President Mwanawasa was a great loss not only to Zambia but SADC in particular and Africa in general.
President Wa Mutharika said President Mwanawasa worked hard to promote friendship and cooperation between the people of Zambia and Malawi.

President Wa Mutharika asked God to strengthen the bereaved family as well as the people of Zambia on this tragic loss.

And Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth of Britain said President Mwanawasa's leadership achievements had earned him the respect of the Commonwealth and other nations.

In her message of condolences, Queen Elizabeth paid tribute to President Mwanawasa for his commitment and good leadership in serving the country.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said President Mwanawasa would be remembered for his anti-corruption work and exemplary leadership in the SADC region, apart from growing the Zambian economy.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper stated that President Mwanawasa's fight against corruption in Zambia and his work towards economic reform would be his lasting legacy.

Harper stated that under President Mwanawasa's leadership, Zambia had been a strong and reliable partner of Canada.

"President Mwanawasa was a strong and principled African leader," Prime Minister Harper stated. "He will be missed."

Meanwhile, Anglican Diocese of Eastern Zambia Bishop William Mchombo stated that President Mwanawasa had left a legacy of good governance, intolerance to corruption and consistency in the running of state affairs.

Bishop Mchombo appealed to the people of Zambia to remain united and peaceful during this time of grief.

"President Mwanawasa has managed to put the economy on good footing. These have helped to earn Zambia and its people a lot of respect and dignity in the region and on international scene.

He has further earned a lot of respect and dignity for Zambia and for Zambians by being a straight forward person and for standing up for the well being of the people of Zimbabwe as they faced political crises," Bishop Mchombo stated.

He stated that President Mwanawasa was selfless in the way he delivered to the Zambian people and had great love for his country.
"On behalf of the Anglican Diocese of Eastern Zambia, and indeed on my own behalf, I would like to convey my deepest sympathy and condolences to the first lady, Mrs Maureen Mwanawasa and the entire Mwanawasa family and indeed to all the people of Zambia.

May the good Lord remain our refuge and fortress in this hour of darkness and distress," stated Bishop Muchombo.

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Inside Zimbabwe talks

Inside Zimbabwe talks
By Kingsley Kaswende in Harare
Sunday August 17, 2008 [04:01]

IT is not difficult to imagine the tensions and arguments in the negotiations for a government of national unity among the three Zimbabwean political parties.
The tensions and arguments are real. But it is not so much about these; it is instead about the fears – real and unreal. Last weekend would have marked the wrapping up of the talks that would have subsequently marked a turning point for this crisis-battered country. But it was not to be.

On July 21, 2008 ZANU-PF, and the two opposition MDC factions led by Morgan Tsvangirai and Prof Arthur Mutambara signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to begin the talks that would set the unity government.

This followed the bloody campaigns ahead of the presidential run-off of June 27, which President Mugabe contested alone after Tsvangirai boycotted. The run-off was a result of the inconclusive general election of March 29, which produced no outright winner, although Tsvangirai was ahead of all the four contestants.

The formation of a unity government came as a proposal by both the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and the African Union, noting that it was the only feasible solution to end Zimbabwe ’s crisis.

So the parties, which all have representatives in parliament, went to the negotiation table on July 25. Since then, there have been marathon negotiations at a secret location in South Africa , debating issues on the agenda that would form the basis of a new government’s blue print.

According to the MoU, the parties would agree to restore the country’s depressed economy, to discuss sanctions and the land question.

On the political front, the parties would have to strike agreement on areas to amend the current constitution, discuss issues of external interference in the affairs of the country, the rule of law, the role of state organs and institutions, priorities of legislative amendments, free political activity as well as the promotion of equality, national healing and cohesion, and unity.

They would also discuss the media environment in Zimbabwe as well as the need to have diverse media outlets, especially external radio stations.

According to documents of this dialogue seen last week, the parties have agreed to all elements except one on which Tsvangirai has strong reservations.

The confidential documents indicate that the parties were putting their signatures to agreements as and when they were reached, meaning that the final settlement would be a compendium of documents that had been assented to by the three party presidents.
On July 25, the negotiators agreed that sanctions and economic embargo in Zimbabwe were hurting the nation and should be lifted as a matter of urgency.

Part of that agreement, titled Restoration of Economic Stability and Growth, reads: "All forms of measures and sanctions against Zimbabwe (must) be lifted in order to facilitate a sustainable solution to the challenges that are currently facing Zimbabwe ."

The negotiators also agreed on the same date that there was undue external interference in the country’s domestic affairs and they would not tolerate the subversion of the sovereign will of the people of Zimbabwe by outsiders with vested interests that ran contrary to national aspirations.

"The parties reaffirm the principle of the United Nations Charter on non-interference in the internal affairs of member countries. The parties hereby agree that the responsibility of effecting change of Government in Zimbabwe vests exclusively in and is the sole prerogative of the people of Zimbabwe through peaceful, democratic and constitutional means," they agreed.

They added that they would "reject any unlawful, violent, undemocratic and unconstitutional means of changing governments" and that "no outsiders have a right to call or campaign for regime change in Zimbabwe."

On the same day, the three parties said Britain must honour its Lancaster House obligations to fund land tenure reforms in the country.

The parties called "upon the United Kingdom government to accept primary responsibility to pay compensation for land acquired from land owners for resettlement".
It was also agreed that the issue of multiple farm ownership and productivity on farms be dealt with as a matter of urgency by the Seventh (next) Parliament through the institution of a holistic land audit.

They made further agreements on the issue of freedom of expression and communication, on State Organs and Institutions, Rule of Law, Respect for the Constitution and Other Laws, and Free Political Activity on July 25.

The next day the parties signed agreements on the Security of Persons and Prevention of Violence, the National Youth Training Programme, Freedom of Assembly and Association, Traditional Leaders and Humanitarian and Food Assistance.
On August 5, the parties signed an agreement titled Promotion of Equality, National Healing, Cohesion and Unity.

Only four issues were left by last weekend and President Mbeki flew into Harare to ensure that the issues were agreed upon in readiness for a new government to be established and for parliament to be sworn in.

Of the outstanding issues was the framework of a new government, an issue that was laid on the table on July 28, 2008.

Others were legislative agenda priorities (tabled on July 25), and implementation mechanisms and electoral vacancies (both tabled on August 5). Three of these were agreed upon last Saturday.

But Tsvangirai rejected one, despite having agreed to it on three occasions earlier. His major contention is that he wants the next government to be premised on the results of the March 29 elections, an issue that President Mugabe vehemently rejects.
Effectively, he wants to be in control of government and this, according to him, would determine how much power he cedes in the next government.

"We knew negotiations would be difficult, but a resolution that represents anything other than the will of the Zimbabwean people would be a disaster for our country. We are committed to a solution that recognises that the people spoke on the 29th of March, 2008," Tsvangirai said the following day after the breaking down of the talks.
This is what caused Tsvangirai to walk out of the talks last Tuesday, putting a hold to all progress.

His Western advisors have advised him that he should negotiate from a position as the winner of the March 29 election.

His major fear is that if President Mugabe stays as president, and he becomes prime minister, the president will retain control of the military and security services, effectively retaining the coercive instruments of real executive power.

In fact, the United States, Britain and the entire European Union have made it clear that they will not help fund a recovery package under a deal like this or if Tsvangirai accepts such a deal.

But in a 50 per cent +1 system, it is naïve to think that if one wins the first round of elections then they would automatically win the second round. There are many examples that prove that results can be overturned in the second round. The most recent and perhaps closer to home is what happened in the Liberian general elections in 2005.
Twenty-two people contested the presidential race in the first round. George Weah finished first and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf finished second, with 28.3 per cent and 19.8 per cent, respectively.

However, when it got to the run-off Johnson-Sirleaf won 59 per cent against Weah’s 41 per cent.

In short, a win in the first round does not necessarily mean a magical win in the second, so this issue will unnecessarily hold the much-needed progress in Zimbabwe .
Perhaps Tsvangirai’s major fear is the repeat of history, a replay of the fate that Joshua Nkomo’s ZAPU party found itself in after agreeing to a loose arrangement to form a unity government with ZANU in 1987.

Critics say the current talks are haunted by the spirit of the late Joshua Nkomo, whose fate stands as a warning to anyone trying to strike a deal with President Mugabe.
They say Nkomo, a liberation leader of impeccable credentials, was duped into signing the Unity Accord - a power-sharing agreement - that brought him into the government as vice-president.

Officially, the two political parties merged to form ZANU-PF, but in reality President Mugabe's party swallowed ZAPU whole and never implemented the agreements. Nkomo was neutralised, destroyed.

In the Unity Accord negotiations there had been an agreement to change symbolic issues, the logo and the name of the party. To the disappointment of ZAPU, the final name remained ZANU-PF, the party’s membership cards carried a portrait of President Mugabe, and the new slogan was “Forward with unity, forward with President Mugabe”.

The “new party” celebrated its 25th anniversary on August 6, 1988, the day when ZANU had split from ZAPU. The one party state was entrenched. ZAPU leaders became members of the politburo and the central committee of the party as well as government ministers. A completely new ministry was established for political affairs in order to facilitate the merger of the two parties.

The political implications of the Unity Accord were contradictory and the powers of the executive were increased.

Whatever the fears, Zimbabwe just needs movement. It will be interesting to see what comes out of the SADC summit today on Zimbabwe ’s future.

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Friday, August 22, 2008

(WAPO) Ohio Voting Machines Contained Programming Error That Dropped Votes

Ohio Voting Machines Contained Programming Error That Dropped Votes
By Mary Pat Flaherty

A voting system used in 34 states contains a critical programming error that can cause votes to be dropped while being electronically transferred from memory cards to a central tallying point, the manufacturer acknowledges.

The problem was identified after complaints from Ohio elections officials following the March primary there, but the logic error that is the root of the problem has been part of the software for 10 years, said Chris Riggall, a spokesman for Premier Election Solutions, formerly known as Diebold.

The flawed software is on both touch screen and optical scan voting machines made by Premier and the problem with vote counts is most likely to affect larger jurisdictions that feed many memory cards to a central counting database rapidly.

Riggall said he was "confident" that elections officials through the years would have realized votes had been dropped when they crosschecked their tallies to certify final elections results and would have reloaded cards so as not to lose votes. Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner has said no Ohio votes were lost because the nine Ohio counties that found the problem caught it before primary results were finalized.

As recently as May, Premier said the problem was not of its making but stemmed from anti-virus software that Ohio had installed on its machines. It also briefly said the mistakes could have come from human mistakes. Further testing by Ohio elections officials and then high volume tests by Premier uncovered the programming error.

"We are indeed distressed that our previous analysis of this issue was in error," Premier President Dave Byrd wrote Tuesday in a letter that was hand-delivered to Brunner. Premier and Brunner are in an ongoing court battle over the voting machines and whether Premier violated its contract with the state and warranties. Half of the Ohio's 88 counties use the GEMS system. Brunner has been a vocal critic of electronic voting machines.

Both Brunner and Premier said that remedies to the problem will be in place for the November presidential election. A nationwide customer alert with recommended actions was issued Tuesday by Premier. Approximately 1,750 jurisdictions use the flawed system, Riggall said. Both Maryland and Virginia use it, he said, although Virginia does not relay its votes to a central counting point, which is where the problem surfaces, Riggall said. Maryland does use a central count, he said. The District of Columbia does not use the GEMS system.

The problem is most likely to affect larger jurisdictions that upload multiple memory cards during counts, Riggall said. The GEMS system is supposed to save information from one card at a time to be counted in order as the cards are read by a database that Riggall described as the "mother ship." But a logic error in the program can cause incoming votes to essentially shove aside other votes that are waiting in the electronic line before they are counted. The mistake occurs in milliseconds, Premier's customer notice says.

The mistake is not immediately apparent, Riggall said, and would have to be caught when elections officials went to match how many memory cards they fed into a central database against how many show as being read by that database. Each card carries a unique marker.

Officials in Butler County, Ohio -- north of Cincinnati -- were the first to raise the issue when 150 votes from a card dropped in March. Brunner's office originally said that 11 counties had the same problem but has since revised that to nine. Her office was not able to say how many dropped votes were discovered in those jurisdictions.

"I can't provide odds on whether dropped votes were not recognized" during the decade GEMS has been used, Rigall said, "but based on what we know about how our customers run their elections and reconcile counts we believe any results not uploaded on election night would have been caught when elections were being certified."

In his letter to Ohio's Brunner, Premier's president said, "Voters in jurisdictions Premier serves, both in Ohio and throughout the country, can be assured that election officials employing standard canvass and crosscheck procedures will count their votes completely and accurately."

Unlike other software, the problem acknowledged by Premier cannot be fixed by sending out a coding fix to its customers because of federal rules for certifying election systems, Rigall said. Changes to systems must go through the Election Assistance Commission, he said, and take two years on average for certification and approval -- and that is apart from whatever approvals and reviews would be needed by each elections board throughout the country.

Brunner said she appreciated "the forthrightness" of Byrd in his letter to her and commended Butler County officials "who went above and beyond the call of duty" to pursue the problem.

"As far as I know, we have not seen that problem," with dropped votes, said Ross Goldstein, deputy administrator for Maryland's State Board of Elections. Maryland counties do upload results to a central system -- which is what generates county vote totals on election night -- but state procedures call for counties to reload every memory card the day after the election to doublecheck results, Goldstein said.

The safeguards that Premier calls for its in customer alert, he said, already are in place in Maryland.

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(TALKZIMBABWE) Beware phony democrats

Beware phony democrats
Tendai Midzi-Murenje—Opinion
Fri, 22 Aug 2008 01:35:00 +0000

DEAR EDITOR—THE right to free speech is as important as life itself, well at least if you claim to be a democrat and to advance principles of democracy. This is an age-old argument and is indisputable among democrats.

Unfortunately, democrats, or some of those people fighting for democracy in Zimbabwe have been at the forefront of denying others the right to that free speech.

Lately, we have seen journalists added onto the sanctions list by countries purporting to be democratic or fostering democracy. I have also witnessed a lot of intolerance amongst people who claim to be fighting for democracy in our country.

The latest issue concerns Caesar Zvayi’s deportation from Botswana and his addition onto the European Union sanctions list, moves by ‘democratic nations’ that want to hear what they want to hear.

There is also now a common argument that those who criticize the West should only do it from Zimbabwe, a pathetic argument to say the least. It’s like saying those who criticize President Mugabe and Zanu PF should only do it from the West. The implication is that they should be deported from Zimbabwe to somewhere, maybe the West.

That means all of the opposition elements in the country should be ‘deported’ to somewhere, presumably the West, where there are people who hold the same ideas as them with regards to the situation in Zimbabwe.

The same argument advanced could mean all those journalists working for The Independent or The Standard newspapers, or any other paper that criticizes the government should do so from outside Zimbabwe.

I find this argument highly flawed, to say the least and shows a lack of understanding of the word “democracy”.

If those people who oppose the likes of Zvayi and Munyaradzi Huni are bent at promoting democracy they should lead by example and allow them to express themselves, otherwise they mirror the very system they purport to be fighting against.

The commitment to full and free political discussion and the resolution of differences through rational argument and political debate is a basic tenet of democracy.

Those people fighting for democracy should be forthcoming in providing that right to other people, regardless of those people’s weaknesses.

I hate to think of a kind of society these 'democrats' are trying to create.

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(TALKZIMBABWE) SOUTH AFRICA: Apartheid party re-registered

SOUTH AFRICA: Apartheid party re-registered
AFP Reporter
Wed, 20 Aug 2008 03:52:00 +0000

SOUTH Africa's former white-minority ruling National Party, dissolved three years ago, has re-registered with the electoral commission ahead of general elections next year, a party spokesman said Monday.

The party which imposed apartheid on South Africa, before leader FW de Klerk engineered the end of the racially exclusive government, suffered a protracted demise under his successor in the guise of the New National Party.

However the NP has regrouped ahead of elections expected in April next year as "a modern and inclusive party that steers away from race politics."

Spokesman Jean Duval-Uys told AFP Monday the party had engaged previous members and supporters of the old NP, including De Klerk, who did not mind the party being revived although he would not take part.

The NNP lost its last lawmaker in parliament after chief Marthinus Van Schalkwyk dissolved the party in 2005 to join the ruling ANC cabinet of President Thabo Mbeki.

Once a symbol of segregated South Africa, the end of the NNP was described by Mbeki as an "unavoidable decision that the time had come to lay the ghost of the party to rest".

Van Schalkwyk's decision left a gap in opposition politics that the reconstituted NP hopes to fill at a time when voters are increasingly disenchanted with the ANC.

"We are trying to restore that balance to have a real strong opposition for the ANC," said Duval-Uys.

South African political support is heavily skewed in favour of the ruling ANC which achieved a 70 percent majority in the 2004 election, followed by the Democratic Alliance with a mere 12 percent.

Duval-Uys said the party would be run by a collective, to avoid a white or black face setting the tone, and is looking at eventually having four ceremonial leaders of different races.

The party will field 175 candidates in the upcoming election and will be officially re-launched on November 23.


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(HERALD) Police station bombed

Police station bombed
Crime Reporter

Police recovered two unexploded bombs on the first floor of the CID Headquarters at Harare Central Police Station after a bomb detonated at the station on Saturday night. Chief spokesperson Senior Assistant Commi-ssioner Wayne Bvudzijena said the Zimbabwe National Army Bomb Disposal Unit recovered the bombs from the first floor of the old wing which now houses the CID.

On the floor are several offices, including those of the Homicide Section, which deals with cases such as murder and armed robbery and is responsible for hunting down hardcore criminals.

Snr Asst Comm Bvudzijena said the first bomb, which exploded at around 6:45pm on Saturday, damaged 13 offices at the police station.

According to forensic experts, the bomb had been placed in a kitchen, which bore the brunt of the explosion. No one was injured in the blast, said Snr Asst Comm Bvudzijena.

He said the Police Forensic Section and the Army Bomb Disposal Unit yesterday combed the area and recovered the fragments of the detonated explosive and two live bombs.

"Also recovered were pieces of safe fuse used to detonate the bomb," Snr Asst Comm Bvudzijena said. He said investigations were still continuing.

Snr Asst Comm Bvudzijena also commended the Harare Fire Brigade, Police Canine Section and the ZNA Bomb Disposal Unit for their swift response to the blast.

Yesterday morning, Inez Terrace and Kenneth Kaunda Avenue had been sealed off while armed troops helped guard the building.

Forensic experts were still searching for more clues while the Harare Fire Brigade was on standby as detectives searched the area to make sure that there were no other explosives.

Among security chiefs who inspected the site yesterday were Defence Forces Commander General Constantine Chiwenga and Police Deputy Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga.

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(HERALD) Farmers blast Noczim over fuel allocation

Farmers blast Noczim over fuel allocation
By Tabitha Mutenga

FARMERS are furious with the National Oil Company of Zimbabwe and some fuel companies for allowing some to collect full allocations of cheap diesel while limiting most to only 200 litres at a time. Noczim ordered fuel companies to restrict fuel purchases for farmers to 200 litres disregarding their full allocations.

The restriction came about, as Noczim took moves to ensure that all farmers get the fuel, which is in short supply.

The motive for the directive was seen in good faith until some people deemed "influential’’ were allowed to pay for and collect their full allocations against the spirit of the restriction.

Mazowe Syndicate chairman, Mr Garikai Msika said Noczim had indeed written a memo to fuel companies ordering them to restrict allocations for all farmers to 200 litres.

"Oil companies are receiving limited quantities and it is only fair that all farmers share the commodity," he said.

Mrs Netsai Nyamhunga, a Banket farmer said there was no problem if the restriction was effected because of low diesel supplies.

"But when other farmers are paying for more fuel allocations than others it shows that the facility is being abused and we have problems with that. If every farmer has to pay for a drum of diesel this should apply across the board,’’ she lamented.

However, Noczim public relations manager Ms Zvikomborero Sibanda said the company was committed to providing fuel to all farmers in line with the country’s agrarian reform and continues to avail diesel for farming activities.

The parastatal has been disbursing diesel for winter wheat farming and summer crop harvesting since April 2008, and to date a total of 16 million litres of diesel has been distributed to farmers.

"This decision was made taking into consideration our limited diesel stocks due to foreign currency challenges the country is facing.

"The parastatal also took into consideration the fact that for winter wheat production, diesel was critical at preparation stage and thus reduced allocations at this time of the season would not have a major impact on the crop output," she said.

A few individuals who sell the product on the parallel market have abused the facility, meant to provide cheap fuel to the farming sector to boost productivity.

Bindura farmer, Mr Remigio Matangira said the 200-litre allocation was not enough to allow serious commercial farming.

"Farmers cannot even harvest their crops and make proper land preparations considering 200 litres can only disc 10ha of land.

"Noczim should identify farmers who are more deserving and give them fuel according to their needs instead of abusing the facility and giving full allocations to just a few people," he said.

Mr Matangira said that he failed to finish harvesting his maize crop because he could not get diesel and his land preparations have been crippled.

Noczim acknowledged that there were farmers that were getting allocations higher than the stipulated 200 litres and these were mainly tobacco growers, currently doing land preparation.

Diesel has been in short supply and most farmers were battling to get adequate supplies for harvesting wheat and land preparation.

Last year, fuel shortages saw a number of farmers reducing hectarage and in the process production declined.

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(HERALD) Western media should stop lying about talks

Western media should stop lying about talks

EDITOR — I read with amazement in some publications last week that the talks between Zanu-PF and the two MDC formations had collapsed after the parties reached a deadlock.

Over the years, I have come to realise that there are some sections of the media that only want to report negative things about Zimbabwe.

So I waited for a truer picture of what was happening to emerge and, sure enough, your paper correctly reported that there was no deadlock and that the negotiators were only coming home to brief their principals on progress made so far.

It is with this in mind that I would like to thank you for keeping the nation and the world at large well-informed about what is happening on our political scene.

I can no longer trust some newspapers and websites, especially those from the West, because they lie about us and try to derail our efforts.

I now understand why the Government has in place laws regulating how the media operate because there are many vultures out there who would like to destroy our country.

While I believe that there should be freedom of the media, I urge the authorities to ensure that there is a modicum of regulation so that liars cannot have the wherewithal to mislead the nation at such a sensitive time in our political development.

It is in the country’s best interests to put in place adequate measures so that those people resident in Zimbabwe who sabotage our progress by giving out false information and working in cahoots with the liars in the Western media are dealt with.

Why should the nation be held to ransom by a bunch of poorly trained journalists who want to make a quick, dishonest dollar?

Barnabas Murefu.



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Our people will triumph again

Our people will triumph again
By Editor
Friday August 22, 2008 [04:00]

It is said that all it requires for evil to triumph is for good men and women to remain silent. Isn’t it true that many people stand by while wrong things are happening hoping that someone else, other than themselves, will do something about it? Many societies have degenerated into chaos and destruction because good men and women kept quiet about the wrongs and vices that they saw, hoping and believing that somebody else would do something about it.

This is also true about a simple thing like litter. Most people do not like litter. But we still have a lot of litter which grows into garbage. The reason is simple. Although we do not like litter, we expect somebody to clean it up. We think it is enough to express a dislike for litter and everything will fall into place, it will clear itself. This is a sin that a lot of good women and men commit.

Everybody likes good governance, including crooks and despots, to the extent that it affects them. Most people want to live in an orderly society, a more just, fair and humane society. But they don’t want to see it as their duty to build that society. They don’t see it as their duty to make a contribution to its realisation.

Many people do not like thieves, even thieves don’t like other thieves to steal from them – to steal that which they themselves have stolen. But they don’t see it as their duty to hunt for thieves and bring them to book, to cleanse society of crooked elements.

As we mourn President Levy Mwanawasa, we need to be very honest with ourselves. We need to ask all the difficult questions that have to be asked.

Death is a difficult human experience. Although universal and inescapable, and seen as a necessary end of life, it still continues to confound us. It is difficult during the time of mourning to see any beauty or advantage in such a painful experience. Adversity is only useful to mankind if we can extract some advantage from it. We must, we have no choice. Levy is dead. Why are we mourning him? Is it Levy we are mourning or are we mourning for ourselves? Have we lost something that we need to identify?

Levy brought a sense of integrity and confidence back to government. He transformed the way people view government. He worked hard to erase the nichekeleko culture of corruption that his predecessor, Frederick Chiluba, had bequeathed him. In accepting an anointment from Chiluba, Levy accepted a very difficult job. He accepted pressures that were almost impossible to surmount. But he chose to go ahead, anyway.

We never supported him in that acceptance. But he made very fine use of it, anyway. And as we had pointed out yesterday, Levy showed us a connection between opportunity, choice and commitment.

Having gotten his opportunity to become President, Levy could have continued the corruption, the thieving of his predecessor. But he made a different choice, a choice in a different direction. He instead chose to fight corruption, to fight the banditry of his sponsors. And this is why today Chiluba and his tandem of thieves are where they are, found with cases to answer and put on their defence on corruption charges. Indeed, as things have turned out, some of them are already in jail. Others have been convicted but are on bail pending appeal.

This is also why some of them like Atan Shansonga who thought were clever by running to London have already lost part of their loot as a result of the decisions of the London courts. Soon, the London judgment will be registered here and Chiluba will have to lose almost everything he had stolen.

It is no wonder these crooks are not sleeping, they are spending sleepless nights scheming, trying to come up with political formulas to reverse Levy’s legacy by ensuring that he is succeeded by a person they can manipulate and control to get their cases discontinued by government.

At the last election, Chiluba crossed from MMD to opposition Patriotic Front (PF) saying twachula pafula (we have suffered enough). As he went to cast his vote, Chiluba told the nation that he had gone to vote out the bad and vote in the good. In this case, the bad was Levy and the MMD. And the good was Michael Sata and the PF.

Chiluba, who during his tenure as president, had little respect for the rule of law wants to go back to that lawlessness. It is clear from the statements he has started issuing that he is looking for a hole, an opportunity to take Zambia backwards for his own sake, to save his own neck.

We have studied Chiluba very closely for the last eighteen years. It is never too difficult to discern when he has got a scheme. We challenge anybody who will contradict us to simply wait and see.
As Chiluba preaches constitutionalism in the MMD, we just must ask ourselves why and which constitutionalism is he talking about. But maybe that is a discourse for another day.

All this tells us that there is a lot of litter in our politics, a lot of garbage. If we want to live in a clean country, we have to work, we have to participate and take part in cleaning it. And there is no contribution in this regard that is small. It is said that what a single ant brings to the anthill is very little; but what a great hill is built when each one does their proper share of the work.

We are mourning Levy because he brought about common decency in our politics. He worked hard to restore confidence in government. Although it took very long for our people to appreciate this, in the last two years many have begun appreciating the work that government has been doing.

There are a lot of problems still. But we seem to have embarked on a good direction. It is this that the demise of Levy has robbed us of. His death threatens continuity. It threatens the gains that we had begun to record. We need to understand that nobody but ourselves is going to fight for Zambia.

There are too many in our country who are voiceless. Each one of us who has a voice needs to fight for them. We must never allow the impunity and shameless plunder of the 1990s to be comfortably accommodated in government. For our part, we will continue to fight the fight we started many years ago. Even if we are the last left fighting, we will fight for as long as we are able to breathe, if this is the fate life has in store for us.

Like all people, we desire rest, leisure and comfort. But not at the expense of the future of our country, of our people. We have to learn to fight for what is good in our country. We have to champion and defend it. We cannot fight this fight on our own. It is not possible. It is not even right. This is why we believe in mobilisation, we believe in the involvement of everyone, we believe in a mass movement against injustice, against evil. Everyone has a role to play in ensuring that we don’t go through reversals, that what we have won is not lost.
Plunderers and those sympathetic to them, regardless of how much they try to disguise themselves, must be stopped. They must be fought.

We do appreciate that Levy’s death is a big disadvantage for the good people of this country. But there are few misfortunes, disadvantages in this world that are permanent, that one cannot turn into a personal triumph if one has the iron will and the necessary skill. As long as one has an iron will, one can turn misfortune into fortune, disadvantage into advantage.

Those who think or want to deceive themselves that with Levy’s death they will be able to turn our country back to the decade of the corruption, the plunder and human rights abuses of the Chiluba era, are deceiving themselves. For them to achieve this, they will have to kill many of us.

Our people took them on at the height of their power and plunder and triumphed. All their criminal schemes, including the third term attempt, failed. Even the handpicking of Levy backfired on them. This should teach them something about our people’s capacity to do what is right, what is needed when the time comes. This time again, we are more than confident that our people will triumph over evil schemes.


Dipak rules out Rupiah

Dipak rules out Rupiah
By Chibaula Silwamba and Amos Malupenga
Friday August 22, 2008 [04:00]

Rupiah Banda is far from what President Levy Mwanawasa had in mind for a successor, former commerce minister Dipak Patel said yesterday. And Patel said in his opinion, finance minister Ng'andu Magande was the most suited candidate. Meanwhile, the opposition UPND yesterday said it had learnt with disbelief that the ruling MMD was scheming to amend the Zambian Constitution to enable Banda to continue ruling without going for a presidential by-election following President Mwanawasa's death.

Reacting to MMD spokesperson Benny Tetamashimba's statement that there are no two ways for the MMD but to automatically pick Vice-President Rupiah Banda as its presidential candidate when a presidential by-election is called, Patel said Vice-President Banda was a nice person but far from what President Mwanawasa had in mind for a successor.

Patel said there were important distinctions between leadership succession and the recruitment of leaders.

“Succession is a process that involves the assumption or transference of leadership from one person or group to another,” Patel said. “How successful, peaceful or effective such an assumption or transference might be will depend on the relevant laws, historical experiences, norms and cultural traditions of the peoples concerned as well as the existential circumstances. Where the laws and traditions are observed, the succession is likely to occur.

In general, leadership succession in post-independence Africa has tended to be a product of crude political manipulations, rebellions or military coups rather that the peaceful application of the constitutional process.”

Patel said this was due, partly, to the fact that constitutionalism is not well-founded in Africa and partly due to the primacy of politics. He said the constitution provided basic foundations for legitimacy of the government to rule and the people's rights to demand accountability and transparency from the government.

Patel said the constitutions of all African countries virtually make provisions for the establishment and maintenance of accountability and transparency but that it was the manner in which those systems had performed which was problematic.

“This deficiency in constitutionalism is one of the major contributory factors to bad governance in Africa,” Patel said. “Politics is a struggle for power. In a democracy, the struggle takes place within a competitive framework regulated by rules, principles, norms and conventions. In much of African politics is personalised and transformed into a means of acquiring personal wealth and power, thus those in power and position of leadership do all they can to keep others out.”

Patel said such people ignore the democratic principle, norms and conventions. He said in Africa, politics ceases to be a properly organised competitive struggle for power; it becomes simply a struggle between those who have the power and want to keep it and those who wish to take it away from them and use it for their own personal benefits.

“Hence the struggle between leader resolve itself into one for the price of power and not as a competition for better policies and solutions to the peoples' problems,” Patel said. “And this is what we must at all costs avoid in the MMD. Some of the fundamental legacies of President Mwanawasa are the observance of the rule of law, the fight against corruption and empowerment of our citizens.

Keeping this in mind, I was shocked to hear from some very senior people in government and the MMD talk about a possibility of amending the Constitution that would allow Vice-President Rupiah Banda to continue as President till 2011. This is not only absurd but dangerous.”

Patel said the Constitution of Zambia clearly defines what should happen when a Republican president dies. He said in this case, Zambians are expecting to go for presidential polls on or before November 17, 2008.

“As to who could be a potential presidential candidate, there are only a few in the MMD who could satisfy the necessary qualities that are required,” Patel said. “President Mwanawasa had always been very clear about it - no corrupt person should succeed him and he was also desirous of a generational change. I had last met him on April 8, 2008 at his office. It seemed to me from the conversation we had that he wanted to make a major reshuffle of Cabinet soon after the AU summit and also make public his choice.

Even though he had never made public his preferred candidate, he had made up his mind. I have no doubt whatsoever that the first lady is aware of his choice, as would few others. So when I heard my friend Tetamashimba speak on Radio QFM, it is very far from what President Mwanawasa Mwanawasa had in mind, for even though Rupiah Banda is a good man, he does not represent a generational change.

In my humble opinion, the most suited candidate for our times today and the future is Ng'andu Peter Magande. He has all the important attributes - credibility, integrity, vision and is passionate about the good Zambians and Zambia can do and achieve, and together with President Mwanawasa has put Zambia on course for rapid economic growth. He is not corrupt, he does not stand for nonsense, he is not a tribalist and he believes in One Zambia, One Nation.”

Responding to a question from a QFM Radio presenter during a special programme on which Zambians were passing messages of condolences on the death of President Mwanawasa on Wednesday, Tetamashimba said it would be very difficult for the MMD to choose a candidate to stand in the elections outside acting President Banda.

The presenter had asked Tetamashimba if some confusion was expected in MMD, looking at the power-hungry people in the party.
In his response, Tetamashimba said President Mwanawasa had indicated that he would not support a corrupt person or a thief as MMD candidate in the 2011 elections, and that was still the position for the MMD.

“First and foremost, yes, I can say that there could be some people and there are some people who took advantage of the President's sickness while in Paris.

They were going round and so on and so forth and I think Honourable Lameck Chibombamilimo came out and spoke about it,” Tetamashimba said. “But I can assure you that President Mwanawasa said that in 2011 he will not campaign for an MMD candidate if that person will be a plunderer, he will be a corrupt person. That is what he told us. And that message is still there up to today. We are not going to allow thieves, we are not going to allow corrupt people to take over the MMD.

The MMD now; we have no acting president in MMD, we have no acting vice-president in MMD, we only have a chairman who constitutionally has no mandate to act as president or act as vice-president of the party. But our friends in Cabinet through the constitutional provisions and through the decision of President Mwanawasa himself, he appointed His Honour the Vice-President to act as President until he returns.

Unfortunately, the passing on of the President is not going to make him return in the form he could take over power and I think that for now we have an acting President who I believe is supposed to be sworn in as we go through all these things. And when he is sworn in as acting President, I don't know but as a politician I can tell you that it will be very difficult for the MMD to choose another candidate to stand in the elections outside RB.”

Tetamashimba said the moment Vice-President Banda is sworn in as acting Republican President, it should be automatic for the ruling party to allow him to stand and then choose somebody who would help him to campaign in the by-elections.

“I have been told that the PF and UPND have been trying to think of how to have an alignment to defeat the MMD and they started doing that two days before the President died,” Tetamashimba said. “But I can assure you that Zambians are saying people should do what President Mwanawasa was doing in terms of the economic activities and so on.”

Meanwhile, UPND chairperson for legal Jack Mwiimbu yesterday said they were aware that MMD was trying to amend the Republican Constitution to allow Vice-President Banda to continue in power from where President Mwanawasa ended without going through an election. Mwiimbu said that was undemocratic and tantamount to canceling the forthcoming presidential by-election in total disregard of the Constitution.

Mwiimbu said at the time, the nation wanted to mourn President Mwanawasa with respect and dignity.

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It's a great loss to SADC, Mugabe mourns Levy

It's a great loss to SADC, Mugabe mourns Levy
By George Chellah, Christopher Miti and Mwala Kalaluka
Friday August 22, 2008 [04:00]

THE death of President Levy Mwanawasa is a great loss to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, President Robert Mugabe has said. And Malawian President Bingu wa Mutharika described the late President Mwanawasa as a great son of Africa whose advice, wisdom and contribution to finding a lasting solution to peace and prosperity in the SADC region would always be cherished.

President Mugabe expressed his sympathies in a message of condolences addressed to Zambia’s Vice-President Rupiah Banda on Wednesday evening.

He said Zimbabwe shares Zambia’s sorrow during this period of bereavement and mourning.

President Mugabe said the death of President Mwanawasa was a great loss not only to the people of Zambia but to SADC, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern African (COMESA) region and the entire African continent.

"It is with profound shock and sorrow that I learnt of the untimely death of our dear brother and colleague, His Excellency President Levy Mwanawasa," said President Mugabe. "On behalf of the government and people of Zimbabwe, and on my own behalf, I would like to convey to you, to the Mwanawasa family, as well as to the government and people of the Republic of Zambia, sincere and heartfelt condolences.
"May his soul rest in eternal peace. Please accept, Honourable Vice- President, the expression of our deepest sympathies."

And in his message of condolences released by Malawi's State House and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to Vice-President Banda, President Wa Mutharika said he had learnt with deep shock, sorrow and grief about the death of President Mwanawasa at a military hospital in Paris, France on Tuesday.

He said the death of President Mwanawasa was a great loss not only to Zambia but SADC in particular and Africa in general.
President Wa Mutharika said President Mwanawasa worked hard to promote friendship and cooperation between the people of Zambia and Malawi.

President Wa Mutharika asked God to strengthen the bereaved family as well as the people of Zambia on this tragic loss.

And Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth of Britain said President Mwanawasa's leadership achievements had earned him the respect of the Commonwealth and other nations.

In her message of condolences, Queen Elizabeth paid tribute to President Mwanawasa for his commitment and good leadership in serving the country.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said President Mwanawasa would be remembered for his anti-corruption work and exemplary leadership in the SADC region, apart from growing the Zambian economy.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper stated that President Mwanawasa's fight against corruption in Zambia and his work towards economic reform would be his lasting legacy.

Harper stated that under President Mwanawasa's leadership, Zambia had been a strong and reliable partner of Canada.

"President Mwanawasa was a strong and principled African leader," Prime Minister Harper stated. "He will be missed."

Meanwhile, Anglican Diocese of Eastern Zambia Bishop William Mchombo stated that President Mwanawasa had left a legacy of good governance, intolerance to corruption and consistency in the running of state affairs.

Bishop Mchombo appealed to the people of Zambia to remain united and peaceful during this time of grief.

"President Mwanawasa has managed to put the economy on good footing. These have helped to earn Zambia and its people a lot of respect and dignity in the region and on international scene.

He has further earned a lot of respect and dignity for Zambia and for Zambians by being a straight forward person and for standing up for the well being of the people of Zimbabwe as they faced political crises," Bishop Mchombo stated.

He stated that President Mwanawasa was selfless in the way he delivered to the Zambian people and had great love for his country.
"On behalf of the Anglican Diocese of Eastern Zambia, and indeed on my own behalf, I would like to convey my deepest sympathy and condolences to the first lady, Mrs Maureen Mwanawasa and the entire Mwanawasa family and indeed to all the people of Zambia.

May the good Lord remain our refuge and fortress in this hour of darkness and distress," stated Bishop Muchombo.

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