Saturday, November 19, 2011

Onus to stamp out corruption in road sector is with govt - Sata

Onus to stamp out corruption in road sector is with govt - Sata
By Bright Mukwasa
Sat 19 Nov. 2011, 12:30 CAT

PRESIDENT Michael Sata says the onus to stamp out corruption in the road sector is with government as it is the one responsible for awarding contracts.

And President Sata has urged citizens to start preparing themselves to make submissions to the newly-appointed 20-member technical committee tasked to formulate the new national constitution.

President Sata made the remarks at State House yesterday when he swore-in Patricia Daka Jere and Francis Kamanga as permanent secretaries for the Ministry of Justice in-charge Drafting and Works, Supply, Transport and Communications respectively ministry.

"There is so much corruption in Road Development Agency because we are blaming the people we are giving contracts that they are doing shoddy work when it is us who are awarding contracts and there are specifications. You as permanent secretary don't leave it to RDA; it is your task to travel the whole country, inspect all these projects including the projects which your relative (former president Rupiah Banda) left, the Mfuwe road," President Sata said.

"We have never seen a road like our Kasama-Luwingu-Mansa road which is 12 years, up to now they have not gone anywhere and we don't know what people of Mporokoso have done; up to now they have never seen a tarred road. So you look at all those things. And among other things which you have to do almost immediately, I want all rural aerodromes upgraded to tar standard. I wanted to fly to Isoka, somebody tells me you can't land in Isoka, Sir. Why shouldn't I land in Isoka? Because the previous people preferred to go to England, America and everywhere else and not Zambia."

President Sata advised the new works and supply ministry permanent secretary to utilise the services of the Zambia National Service in fixing road infrastructure saying it was created for that function.

"I went to see the Mongu-Kalabo road, there's nothing going on.You can't blame the China man who is doing that because the China man may have greeted somebody from RDA nicely. So please you have seen this job in the army, you have seen this job in Zambia, you have seen this job in Botswana. Let's add where UNIP left because without UNIP I don't know what we will do. Because all the tar roads that you have in Zambia today were done by UNIP, MMD did not do anything."

President Sata also said it was difficult to balance appointments based on tribe.

"By coincidence you all come from Eastern Province. You are going to get some professional critics like Mr. Sondashi who wants to be balanced, but you don't balance human beings, you balance the integrity and human brains," he added.

"I think our colleagues had delayed, they should have been complaining but they have not complained so we decided on their behalf, this lady you are seeing there she might not walk, she might not run but that little head of hers, the entire government, the entire judiciary, the entire police depends on her. If she can't write and draft laws it will be very difficult for lawyers like Charity Mwansa to interpret but we thought we should recognise her," said President Sata in reference to the appointment Patricia Daka Jere, who is disabled.

Later in an interview, Daka-Jere said she was elated at the appointment and pledged to work diligently.
And President Sata said those people who were serious about the constitution-making process were free to submit their views to the technical committee.

"People are talking about balancing, the majority of people on that committee are ‘born again' (Christians) so I don't know why that man from Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia is complaining. We have more than 11 Catholic Bishops, the man who was complaining is the only bishop in that EFZ so if you are the only Bishop and you want to bamba zonke (get everything)," he said.

"So what we do is there are more ‘born agains' on that committee and if those people are serious about the constitution let them submit, even individuals who are serious, you the press what you think don't just start sing stories we want Information bill, what Information bill? Let's see what you can write about Information bill."



Ex-DEC chief gets K5m bail

Ex-DEC chief gets K5m bail
By Maluba Jere
Thu 17 Nov. 2011, 14:00 CAT

FORMER Drug Enforcement Commission chief Aaron Zulu has been granted K5 million cash bail after appearing in the magistrates' court on a charge of abuse of authority of office.

57-year-old Zulu of house number three Jesmondine, who first appeared before chief resident magistrate Joshua Banda, had his matter allocated to principal resident magistrate Aridah Chulu where he appeared for mention.

When the case was called, Zambia Police senior legal officer Simon Tembo told magistrate Chulu that the matter was coming up for mention as the state was still awaiting consent from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

Tembo told the court that the matter should be mentioned and that Zulu should appear in court for another mention on November 23, 2011.

Zulu's lawyer Sakwiba Sikota applied for bail, saying the offence his client was charged with was bailable.

Sikota said Zulu was of fixed abode and that until his recent retirement as commissioner at DEC, he was in gainful employment.

He said Zulu was a Zambian who was able to provide sureties in an event that he is granted bail.

The state did not object to the bail application.

Magistrate Chulu then granted Zulu K5 million bail with two working sureties in the like sum but in their own recognisance.

Zulu, who was arrested on Tuesday, is charged with one count of abuse of authority of office contrary to Section 99 (1) of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia.

It is alleged that Zulu on July 8, 2011, in Lusaka, being a person employed in the public service, namely DEC as commissioner abused the authority of his office and in breach of the laid down procedures sold or directed the sale of 118.897 kilogrammes of gold to Societe Financier Du Seujut SA at a value less than the market price, an act prejudicial to the rights or interests of the government.

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Mama Betty is an inspiration - Grillo

Mama Betty is an inspiration - Grillo
By Masuzyo Chakwe
Sat 19 Nov. 2011, 12:30 CAT

MAMA Betty Kaunda is an inspiration to the women of Zambia, says the women's movement. In a congratulatory message to Mama Betty on her 83rd birthday which fell on Thursday, NGOCC board chairperson Beatrice Grillo said the Zambian women celebrate Mama Betty's 83rd birthday with pride.

Grillo said the women's movement recognised Mama Betty's resilience and determination as the bedrock of not just her family but the nation. She said the women's movement felt obliged to celebrate Mama Betty's 83rd birthday because she was an inspiration to the women.

"She is one of the freedom fighters that contributed to the liberation of the country, yet she has remained a humble and down to earth person. She has remained friendly, approachable even at the time she was first lady," she said.

Grillo said Zambian women felt lucky to have such a woman and urged the government to honour her by naming some of the institutions after her.

"We also similarly appeal to the Lusaka City Council to name some of the many nameless streets and roads after women who have greatly contributed to the nation. As we celebrate her contributions in various national endeavours, we salute Mama Betty for her courage and respect for human dignity, Happy 83rd birthday mother of the nation and receive God's abundant blessings," said Grillo.

Mama Betty Mutinke Kaunda was born on November, 17, 1928 at Mpika to Kaweche Banda and Milika Sakala Banda.

She went to school at Mbereshi Girls and also did training at the Mindolo Ecumenical Foundation's Women's programme and worked as a teacher in Mufulira.

In 1964, she married her fellow teacher Kenneth Kaunda of Chinsali, with whom she has seven sons, two daughters and an adopted son.

During Zambia's struggle for independence, she struggled and sacrificed for her family to make ends meet. At the same time, she worked with women folk and men to fight for independence.

Mama Betty, as Zambia's first, first lady from October 1964 to November 1991 is considered the mother of the nation.

She has preferred to contribute quietly, mostly behind the scenes, to greatly support her family and nation and has been matron of many organisations and projects.

Mama Betty is also an example of many people living with diabetes as she has been living with it since 1967.

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Kaingu's daughter turns porn star

Kaingu's daughter turns porn star
By Allan Mulenga, Kombe Chimpinde and Salim Dawood
Sat 19 Nov. 2011, 12:30 CAT

ZCAS has expelled Michael Kaingu's daughter, Iris, over a lurid sex video she appears in. And police in Lusaka have launched investigations into the matter where Iris appears with her partner who is also a ZCAS student.

Zambia Centre for Accountancy Studies (ZCAS) executive director Dr Yejju Gouthama Rao confirmed that the known students had been expelled from the college. Dr. Rao, who could not delve into the matter for fear of jeopardising police investigations, said the students' conduct had dented the image of the institution.

"Actually, my colleague is at Central Police station for questioning now yesterday , so we are waiting for him and I think at this stage we don't want to say anything. Once everything is clear we will issue an official statement. No, I don't want to comment on anything in any way because you see the issue at hand here is sensitive," he said. "What is true is that two students have been expelled and it was done the day we heard about it last week. But, otherwise the matter is being investigated."
Dr. Rao explained that management decided to expel the students for bringing the name of the institution into disrepute.

"Usually, I don't know really what to say because as much as we love the press freedom, certain things are usually misquoted to make it spicy. We are an institution of repute and for us to continue with that reputation we have to focus on our core business. I mean anything that is not desirable, naturally it will have an impact. Of course the impact might vary depending on the type of information that is being circulated,´´ said Dr. Rao.

Both police and Kaingu confirmed the matter in separate interviews.

Police spokesperson Elizabeth Kanjela said the Lusaka police division had moved in on the matter based on rumours that a pornographic video was circulating on the Internet.

"I need to get confirmation on the number of people implicated because no public complaint has been made. We decided to move in and do our own investigations ," said Kanjela.

And when contacted Kaingu, who is former community development minister, affirmatively confirmed being the father of Iris, but could not give further details saying: "Yes she is my daughter."

Kaingu's daughter Iris and her boyfriend whose name we could not confirm, both students at ZCAS, allegedly produced a pornographic video of their sex romp currently circulating on the Internet.
The 16-minute clip is a graphic sexual thriller of Iris and her boy friend attempting professional porn-style feats.

The amateur-shot video has the two in a dimly-lit room with nothing else pictured besides them going through a routine of myriad sexual positions with their nude bodies clearly visible.

The video starts with the naked duo fondling on a college-style single bed and Iris' face comes up, face up performing oral sex on her boyfriend who is kneeling over her abdomen.

After performing oral sex on her partner, Iris reaches out for some juice by the bed side as if to sooth her throat before resuming the rest of the orgy.

Though the couple seems to be conversing throughout the lurid sexual marathon, their conversation is not audible as the video's sound has been faded out with background music.

The amateurish video whose production is credited to ZCAS and titled 'Naughty college girl Iris likes Dark N lovely' on predominantly features Iris' face and which becomes even more vivid when she performs a close to 2 minute oral sex with her partner.

In the video, the couple attempt various positions including some that resemble olympic-style acrobatics.

Towards the end, Iris slides to the side of the bed and while covering her chest with her right hand, looks into the camera thereby limiting any chance of mistaken identity.

The video has enjoyed widespread viewing in neighbouring Evelyn Hone College of Applied Arts and Commerce, National Institute of Public Administration and other colleges.

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Cops search Dora's house

COMMENT - Why do these bicycles show up all over the place?

Cops search Dora's house
By Bright Mukwasa
Sat 19 Nov. 2011, 12:30 CAT

POLICE yesterday searched the house of Petauke Central member of parliament Dora Siliya for over an hour. During a check at her house No 411 on Independence Avenue in Lusaka yesterday around 10:50 hours, police were seen inside her yard moving about in the presence of her lawyer Sakwiba Sikota.

Siliya, Sikota and the police only left the house around 11:40 hours to unknown destinations. Siliya, who is also MMD spokesperson, refused to talk to journalists who had camped outside her residence. According to police sources, Siliya is scheduled to appear for investigations on Monday in connection with some electric bicycles found at her house.

"We found 12 electric bicycles, we couldn't move them out because you the press had camped outside so we agreed that Ms Siliya proceeds with her parliamentary business to allow you press men to leave. But she is expected to report at the former Task Force offices for questioning on Monday in connection with the same materials," the source said.

Sikota also refused to disclose what the police had been doing in Siliya's house.

"Take down the name of that guy who invaded up there, once we see that clip which was taken, then we are suing that organisation because that's infringement of privacy, that's not allowed to be done," Sikota said as journalists insisted on knowing what was happening in inside the premises.

"No, no, if you had not invaded privacy, if you had respected people's privacy I would have talked to you. You have lost the opportunity by that invasion of privacy. You have messed up by invading privacy," said Sikota before leaving the premises.

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(LUSAKATIMES) Fight against corruption should not be a tool to persecute ex-ministers-Siliya

Fight against corruption should not be a tool to persecute ex-ministers-Siliya
TIME PUBLISHED - Saturday, November 19, 2011, 8:33 am

MMD spokesperson Dora Siliya has appealed to the Patriotic Front (PF) Government not to use the fight against corruption to persecute innocent people from the former ruling party. But Chief Government spokesperson Given Lubinda said the PF Government has no reasons to settle political scores using institutions of governance like the police.

Ms Siliya told journalists after attending former Minister of Mines and Minerals Development Maxwell Mwale’s case at the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court complex that the PF should strive to build on the country’s peace and not to persecute former MMD cabinet ministers.

“Let us not set a precedent that every party which comes out of power must have its former cabinet ministers and members prosecuted for corruption.

“The fight against corruption is good but it should not be a tool to persecute former cabinet ministers,” she said.

Ms Siliya said Zambia is treading on dangerous grounds if every political party which forms government will take a stance of prosecuting former cabinet ministers.

She claimed that MMD members are being mistreated by the PF Government over campaign materials the former ruling party legally acquired.

Ms Siliya said it is surprising the PF Government is after the MMD over campaign materials when the ruling party is busy distributing chitenge materials in Chongwe Constituency.

“The PF today is persecuting the MMD over campaign materials because they did not have some chitenge materials to distribute during the September 2011 tripartite election.

“But why are they distributing chitenge materials in Chongwe for the by-election if that is being considered as corruption?” she asked.

Ms Siliya said the PF should concentrate on governing the country and build on the already existing peace for Zambia to continue being a beacon of hope and peace.

But Mr Lubinda, who is also Minister of Information, Broadcasting and Tourism, said the PF Government has not embarked on a witch hunt against the former cabinet ministers in the MMD Government.

He said people who have been arrested by the police have questions which the police want them to answer.
“Let the old adage come true today, Let the guilty be afraid, at an appearance of the police officer they shall run and when they so do the police will follow them.

“All those people who have been arrested, it is because the police believe that they have answers to the questions the police have,” Mr Lubinda said.

He said there is no political motivation to arrest some cabinet ministers and some prominent figures.

Mr Lubinda said all Zambians know of scandals associated with named individuals in the former regime but those people are still going on about with their business.

“Indeed those individuals are still going on about with their business free, had we mounted a witch hunt, all such people would have been rounded up,” he said.

Mr Lubinda said people who are free in their dealings will have their minds and conscious clear and will go about with their businesses as free citizens as any other person.

He said the PF Government has no interest “whatsoever” in settling political scores using institutions of governance, especially the police.

[Zambia Daily Mail]

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(LUSAKATIMES) Levy Mwanawasa directed Zambia Revenue Authority to buy scanners

Levy Mwanawasa directed Zambia Revenue Authority to buy scanners
TIME PUBLISHED - Friday, November 18, 2011, 8:26 am

THE Kingsley Chanda-led Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) commission of inquiry has heard that late Republican president Levy Mwanawasa is the one who gave the instruction for the purchase of the controversial eight ZRA scanners from China.

Both deputy secretary to the Cabinet Evans Chibiliti and former minister of Finance Situmbeko Musokotwane said Dr Mwanawasa was the one who gave the instruction for the procurement of the eight scanners from China for ZRA.

In his submission to the commission yesterday, Mr Chibiliti said the purchase of the scanners was a result of diplomatic visits at head of State level and came up after the visit of Chinese President Hu Jintao to Zambia in 2007. He said during that visit, there was a request by Zambia toChina asking for a concessional loan of US$100 million which was meant for earth moving machines, irrigation projects, grain silos, water and sanitation projects and the completion of the Government complex.

In the initial plan, ZRA scanners were not there but later there was a proposal from China that the Government should drop the water and sanitation project which was to cost $20 million and the irrigation project which was to cost $7.5 million of the concessional loan to instead procure eight scanners for ZRA from Nuctech, a Chinese firm at a cost of $27 million. Mr Chibiliti said the Zambian Government accepted that decision but ZRA objected, saying the scanners would be expensive to operate and maintain. “At ZRA technical level, advice was given against the purchase of the scanners, but the political level insisted that ZRA needed the scanners.

This is when Dr Mwanawasa gave instructions to then vice-president Rupiah Banda to proceed to procure the scanners. Initially he said 10 scanners must be procured but later when he realised that there were already two in the country, he said only eight should be bought,” Mr Chibiliti said. He said the procurement of the scanners was properly authorised by Dr Mwanawasa and his vice Mr Banda. Mr Chibiliti said he was against the purchase of all the scanners and to that effect, he wrote to thenminister of Finance to advise against the purchase of the scanners.

He said Zambia did not need all the eight scanners purchased from China at a go but he did not receive any response from the minister until he left the position of secretary to the treasury after which the scanners were procured. Later, formerminister of Finance Situmbeko Musokotwane also stated that the purchase of the scanners was under instruction from Dr Mwanawasa who asked former president Banda to procure the said scanners.

When asked the role of Ministry of Finance in providing support services for the scanners through the hiring of cargo scan, Dr Musokotwane requested commissioners that he answers that question in camera. Later, when the media was called back, commissioners grilled Dr Musokotwane on the concessioning of Zambia’s six borders to a private company, saying that was a threat to national security.

Mr Chanda said the commission did not understand why the Government decided to allow the concessioner to buy and control the pieces of land that were housing the border infrastructure in Nakonde, Kasumbalesa and six other border areas.

But Dr Musokotwane said the Government did what it did because it wanted to upgrade borders and improve employment levels in the country which was being done in many countries of the world.

Meanwhile, former Finance minister N’gandu Magande yesterday told the commission that ZRA should be allowed to operate independently. The former Finance minister said this when Mr Chanda requested Mr Magande to make a comment on the governance system of ZRA when he appeared before the commission yesterday.

Mr Chanda said from the information obtained so far from the witnesses that appeared before the commission, there was indication that serious decisions were made at ZRA following instructions from the Ministry of Finance and State House. He said ZRA made serious decisions without getting permission from the board, adding that the board was in most cases just informed of such.

But Mr Magande said there was need to appoint competent people on the board of ZRA who would be in a position to understand the operations of the commission. He said appointing people who were competent was important because such people were in a position to make correct decisions which they were able to defend if questioned.

[Times of Zambia]

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Friday, November 18, 2011

(TIMES OF SWAZILAND) SD spends too much on the army – CIA

COMMENT - The CIA has some gall criticizing the size of the Swaziland army, when the US is opening up new bases in Australia, and has the biggest army in the world by far. Perhaps they think the army is too strong to easily overthrow and invade, by financing and arming the political opposition.

SD spends too much on the army – CIA
By WELCOME DLAMINI on November 18,2011

Soldiers marching during a parade. However these soldiers have nothing to do with the article.

MBABANE – As Swaziland grapples with a financial crisis it has also been found that government is spending too much on its army.

The 2011 Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) World Factbook carries what is termed as latest statistics which show Swaziland reportedly spending more money on the army than any other country in the SADC region and ranks 13th in the world. The comparison has been made in terms of the percentage of the gross domestic product (GDP) that a country spends on the army. It must be noted that the CIA based its information on statistics dating between 2005 and 2010 for the various countries but when it comes to Swaziland the data is for 2006.

In the entire African continent, Swaziland reportedly ranks third after Burundi and Morocco who are ranked eighth and 11th in the world respectively. The World Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.

The statistics come at a time when there has been a public outcry over government’s priorities in terms of expenditure as even a recently tabled supplementary budget made a provision for a further E64m request for the army.

The National Public Servants and Allied Workers Union (NAPSAWU) Secretary General Vincent Dlamini said they have been concerned over the spending pattern of government for a while.

"Swaziland is not even involved in peacekeeping operations and therefore we have a problem with government militarising the country," he said.

Dlamini said government had got its priorities all wrong as it should be focusing on health, education, job creation and infrastructure development so as to resuscitate the country’s economy. Dlamini said the best way for government to defend itself was by providing enough services for the people.

"Let government assist SMEs so as to create more jobs. Once we have more people working then people will be happy and there would be social stability. Let us focus on that, not the military," he added.

According to the CIA, Swaziland spent 4.7 per cent of GDP on the army while Burundi and Morocco spent 5.9 per cent and five per cent respectively.

An analysis of the statistics suggests that the kingdom’s military expenditure surpasses that of the United States of America and war-ravaged Libya.

The USA, which is one of the world’s ‘superpowers’ spends 4.06 per cent of its GDP on the army and is ranked 24th in the world.

Libya, which is fresh from an uprising that cost the life of its leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, spends 3.9 per cent of GDP on the army and ranks 25th in the world. Rwanda is ranked 26th in the world and at a spending of 2.9 per cent of GDP on the army at the time of the statistics.

In the SADC region, Zimbabwe spends 3.8 per cent, Namibia allocates 3.7 percent; Botswana spends 3.3 per cent, Lesotho spends 2.6 per cent; South Africa spends 1.7 per cent and Mozambique is at 0.8 per cent. Zimbabwe ranks 18th in the world, Namibia 19th, Botswana 23rd, Lesotho 29th, South Africa 43rd and Mozambique is positioned 54th.

In the 2011/2012 budget estimates, Swaziland’s Ministry of Defence was allocated a head total of E623 219 583 of which E523 571 352 was specifically for activity 12 (Defence).

These statistics have not yet been put in account for the CIA website.

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is an independent US Government agency responsible for providing national security intelligence to senior US policymakers.

Civil servants say it’s a tragedy

MBABANE – Civil servants say Swaziland’s expenditure on the army is a tragedy and want the retirement age for soldiers reduced to 50.

Vincent Dlamini, who is Secretary General for the National Public Servants and Allied Workers Union (NAPSAWU), feels that government made a blunder by increasing the retirement age to 60 for soldiers.

"We asked government as to why it was keeping soldiers for another 10 years because that adds to the number of civil servants. Physically, what can a soldier do at 60 years? The country is not at war so there is no need to spend 4.7 per cent of GDP on the army. Government is complaining about the huge wage bill but is keeping more people in the army," Dlamini said. comment, Percy cites national security

MBABANE – Government says it cannot comment on issues of the army because they border on national security.

Government Press Secretary Percy Simelane said security matters were not open to the public.

"I cannot comment on the army’s budget because it is a security matter. Security matters are not as open to the public as other issues. We don’t comment on issues of the army. We don’t normally discuss them for security reasons," Simelane said.

Last week, Premier Sibusiso Barnabas Dlamini said the army needed to be well taken care of so that the nation could have peaceful nights and not having to look over their shoulders because of security threats.

He said an army ensured that a country lived in peace.

SADC Military expenditure rankings according to CIA

Rank Country % of GDP Date of info

1. Swaziland 4.7 2006

2. Zimbabwe 3.8 2006

3. Namibia 3.7 2006

4. Angola 3.6 2009

5. Botswana 3.3 2006

6. Lesotho 2.6 2006

7. Zambia 1.8 2005

8. South Africa 1.7 2006

9. Malawi 1.3 2006

10. Madagascar 1.0 2006

11. Mozambique 0.8 2006

World top 20 countries on military expenditure according to CIA

Rank Country % of GDP Date of Info

1. Oman 11.4 2005

2. Qatar 10 2005

2. Saudi Arabia 10 2005

3. Jordan 8.6 2006

3. Iraq 8.6 2006

4. Israel 7.3 2006

5. Yemen 6.6 2006

6. Eritrea 6.3 2006

7. Macedonia 6 2005

8. Syria 5.9 2005

8. Burundi 5.9 2006

9. Mauritania 5.5 2006

9. Maldives 5.5 2005

10. Turkey 5.3 2005

10. Kuwait 5.3 2006

11. Morocco 5.0 2003

12. Singapore 4.9 2005

13. Swaziland 4.7 2006

14. Bahrain 4.5 2006

14. Bosnia 4.5 2005

15. Greece 4.3 2005

16. United States 4.06 2005

17. Russia 3.9 2005

17. Libya 3.9 2005

18. Zimbabwe 3.8 2006

18. Cyprus 3,8 2005

18. Cuba 3.8 2006

18. Djibouti 3.8 2006

19. Namibia 3.7 2006

20. Angola 3.6 2009

We have second smallest army in the SADC region

MBABANE - Despite the reportedly high expenditure, available statistics reflect that Swaziland has the second smallest army in the SADC region after the Kingdom of Lesotho.

According to the internet accessible Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) World Factbook, Swaziland is reported to have an army of over 3 000 soldiers, while Lesotho has 2 000; South Africa has 62 082; Zimbabwe has 29 000; Zambia 15 100; Mozambique 11 200; and Namibia has 9 200 soldiers.

The army spokesperson Khanya Dlamini referred any queries to government.

The latest expenditure on the army is an allocation of E64 million to be provided through the supplementary budget tabled in Parliament by Finance Minister Majozi Sithole last week.

On Wednesday, the International Monetary Fund welcomed the supplementary budget for its inclusion of downward revisions in revenue projections and cuts in capital expenditures for goods and services "while regularising earlier budgetary overruns in defence expenditures."

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(TIMES OF SWAZILAND)Pastors meet with SRA about intended taxation

Pastors meet with SRA about intended taxation
By LUCKY TSABEDZE on November 18,2011

MATSAPHA - Pastors want to take action against their intended taxation by the Swaziland Revenue Authority (SRA). The men of the cloth had a meeting with SRA officials yesterday at the Jesus Calls Ministries in Matsapha.

The intention of the meeting was to explain issues around the legislation to be used and the processes that will be used by the SRA.

The media was not allowed to attend the meeting. The President of the Swaziland Conference of Churches, Steven Masilela said the meeting with SRA officials was fruitful but the pastors and reverends had misgivings with some aspects of the legislation.

"We will not divulge the course of action that we will take but we are going to take action," said Masilela yesterday.

Masilela said the legislation to be used was drafted in 2004, and they were not consulted.

"When the legislation was drawn we were not consulted, and it is only now that this legislation will be put into use.

"The people from SRA explained where they are coming from with this taxation, and how it will be carried out – we understood what they were saying. But as in all similar cases, there are issues on which wediffer and we will take action," said Masilela last night.

"However, SRA clarified yesterday that they did not announce a date on which our taxation will begin. They said they were misquoted," said Masilela.

Vusi Dlamini of the SRA could not be found for comment last night.

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(HERALD) Zim will soldier on, says Acting President Nkomo

Zim will soldier on, says Acting President Nkomo
Friday, 18 November 2011 00:00
Herald Reporter

ACTING President John Nkomo yesterday warned that Zimbabwe will not curve in to the illegal sanctions but will soldier on even if the West does not reconsider its stance on the matter.

Speaking after meeting the Germany Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Hans Gunter Gnodtke at his Munhumutapa offices, Acting President Nkomo said Zimbabwe was moving forward despite the West's failure to revoke the embargoes. "We were hoping that the West would re-examine their stance on Zimbabwe and help us promote development and reconciliation among Zimbabweans.

"Instead, they have conveniently chosen to call the sanctions restrictive measures, which they know will be divisive on our society creating suspicion and strife among our people," he said.

He said the recent indaba on political violence by the three principals to the Global Political Agreement was a step in the right direction as the leaders committed themselves to promoting tolerance and acceptance of divergent views.

"We are all Zimbabweans. What the world wants to perceive as differences are not differences at all but only diverging political views that can be discussed and settled.

"The three leaders implored their followers to identify the differences and find solutions or mechanisms of dealing with the challenges. They agreed on a code of conduct to regulate their followers as they go about their political activities," he added.

He said the Germany ambassador's visit enabled him to get a feel of the Zimbabwean political processes currently underway and that the people of Zimbabwe were resilient and committed to what they believed in their sovereignty.

Ambassador Gnodtke conceded that the political processes in Zimbabwe (the GPA) must soon come to an end after which his country would reestablish ties with Zimbabwe.
"No one in Germany would want to see the sanctions go beyond the conclusion of the current political reform processes. Even the European Union will appreciate the need to revisit the restrictive measures once Zimbabweans achieve the targets they have set for themselves in the GPA," he said.

Ambassador Gnodtke said Zimbabwe had a bright future as it was endowed with very good climatic conditions, an intelligent human resource base and vast minerals to transform its economy.
"Once the political reforms are concluded, we will resume our normal relations and more Germans will be coming here. Germany businesses have a lot of interest in the mining, agricultural and banking sectors, to name just a few.

"They will definitely come over to have a closer look at the opportunities that will come with the conclusion of your political reform processes," he said.
Ambassador Gnodtke said Germany companies will next year participate at the Bulawayo Trade Fair as a way of exploring more business opportunities in Zimbabwe.



(HERALD) MDC-T: Dreams of death, division and invasion

MDC-T: Dreams of death, division and invasion
Friday, 11 November 2011 21:04

Far more interesting than political clashes in Chitungwiza last Sunday were many other unwritten factors which really matter to a good understanding of the state we are in.

I do not want to appear like I condone political violence. Or that I have no sympathies for those who got bashed in the process. But I don't come from that school where gore and weeping wounds, not hard, inconvenient facts guide responses, indeed trigger maudlin sentimentality.

Blood and split bones are dramatic manifestations of violence; they are not its causes or explanation. The fact that you have a weeping wound, however deep, should never be used to grant you innocence and the pity you don't deserve. Or to get us to pass over hard questions you must answer urgently, even if that means from your hospital bed, between injections or worse, from your grave.

We have related to violence like cinema goers whose sympathies are apportioned on the basis of who the stronger side is, never on the basis of who cast the first stone, however small. Losing an encounter you provoked does not render you innocent, or pity-deserving.

That you are a junior party in Government, or a late comer to Government does not make you an unconditional candidate for sympathies. It makes you both guilty and foolhardy.

Neither of the two, or both in combination, are edifying qualities.

[Home Affairs co-Minister Theresa Makone.]

Forever victims, villains

More starkly, your victim status yesterday or the day before, does not immunise you for an eternal future full of transgressions, your transgressions at that.
The media must move away from this shabby habit of exculpating parties merely on the basis that they were victims of violence last Thursday, last week, last month, last year, last decade. Each situation must yield its own villains, its own victims. Similarly, the behaviour of our Police Force, however adequate or inadequate in the eyes of which ever jaundiced beholder, does not itself become the subject matter in a situation where political violence is the issue. You mean we provoke violence so as to judge police reaction?

You indulge in violence because you think the police must come to your rescue when you get thumped? And when they don't, they are to blame for the violence? When the reaction of the Police is judged not adequate, how does that make one party in the inclusive Government culpable?

Is Home Affairs not that one Ministry which stands out as unique by dint of its co-management by two political parties, and, ironically enough parties which are to blame for the Sunday violence? Or is that other Minister weeping victim-hood telling us she is effete as a co-manager, in which case the MDC-T must replace her with someone more effective?
Comically, this week saw both husband and wife crying. Zvino ainyaradza mumwe ndiani munzanga yaMakone?

Scrapping pus, reaching the wound
Then you have a whole media culture that shies away from asking these very basic questions. We must learn from doctors.
They do not cut around a suppurating wound for fear of pus, smell and all. No. They cut through the pass, scrub the dirt, clean the wound and then administer the healing concoction. You wail, you crease, you toss, you turn, you belch from all openings but the doctor's healing hand will move in determinedly, ignoring all your discomforts and protests, however fervent.
To reach the wound, you must scrap pus. This is what we fail to do in Zimbabwe, which is why we have never cured the disease that afflicts our body politic.

[VIOLENT scenes outside Harvest House last week: The MDC-T has created a whole operation whose sole mission and purpose is to engineer and capture images of violence - any violence - whose mission is to capture death - any death - in order to build a case for a Libya-style intervention.]

VIOLENT scenes outside Harvest House last week: The MDC-T has created a whole operation whose sole mission and purpose is to engineer and capture images of violence - any violence - whose mission is to capture death - any death - in order to build a case for a Libya-style intervention.
An election of images
Let me tell it like it is. As I write, the MDC-T has created a whole operation whose sole mission and purpose is to engineer and capture images of violence - any violence - whose mission is to capture death - any death - in order to build a case for a Libya-style intervention. Lots of sophisticated audio-visual equipment has come into the country for that purpose. Zimbabwe's politics are about to enter a heavily mediased phase, something this column hinted at more than two years ago.

I do not need to remind you that the last three wars we have witnessed since the turn of the century have been provoked by interests, sold and justified through and by the media.
It does strip that much vaunted institution of its democratic claims, does it not? How does an institution which claims to stand for civil liberties become itself a means for war?

The world in a grain of sand
Let me add to the matter. Before year end, the Prime Minister will visit Morocco, before winding up in the US. It sounds innocuous, does it not? Yet it is not. You want to read that visit together with visits made early on by him to countries like Gabon, Nigeria and Ivory Coast. Of course do not leave out his recent trip to the US, and his call on the Secretary General of the UN. Except for Ivory Coast, all these countries he visited are in the UN Security Council, with Morocco as the latest entrant.

Interestingly, Morocco is not a member of the AU, having opted out of the AU over Western Sahara. It thus is not bound by AU decisions, even though it is read internationally as representing Africa.
In any case, there is very little point in expecting Morocco to represent the AU when countries like Nigeria, South Africa and Gabon which are AU members - leading ones too - still flouted the AU position when it came to Libya. In the case of Nigeria, flouted the AU position and values over Ivory Coast too.

Jean Ping, the Gabonese man perched at the helm of the AU was there when Sarkozy and company met in Europe over prostate Libya. He did not feel restrained by the decisions of the very AU at whose helm he sits.

Why blame Morocco? Or expect it to be AU in sensibility when the AU itself cannot be that, indeed cannot abide by its own decisions?

From Rhodesia to Zimbabwe
[File picture of a Moroccan snake charmer: Even well before our Independence, Morocco worked with the Rhodesians against the two liberation movements.]

File picture of a Moroccan snake charmer: Even well before our Independence, Morocco worked with the Rhodesians against the two liberation movements.
And apart from not being a member of the AU, Morocco has more compelling reasons to act against African interests, Zimbabwean ones especially. Apart from Algeria, Zimbabwe is the only other African country which has given Polisario Front of Western Sahara solid backing, to great Moroccan chagrin. Even well before our Independence, Morocco worked with the Rhodesians against the two liberation movements.

On the eve of Independence, it went on to support Bishop Abel Tendekayi Muzorewa - now late - against the Patriotic Front. It did more. It became the conduit for American electoral support to the internal settlement group, led of course by Muzorewa. America is no stranger to meddling in Zimbabwean politics, all against majority interests. Morocco has been a willing hand in this meddlesome policy. Let that be known.

Speaking to Morocco's Amadeus
With the advent of the British and American-funded MDC, Morocco continued to play the same infamous role, only this time by adopting MDC-T where it used to have UANC which is now as defunct as its owner is dead.

In Morocco, there is some phony organisation called Amadeus Institute. It masquerades as a think tank on social and economic matters. In reality, it is a front for western-backed intrusive politics on the continent, politics which use Rabat as both a launch pad and a cat's paw. Founded in 2008 and associated with the Government of Morocco, specifically its foreign ministry and minister, it introduces itself as seized with the purpose of "external co-operation management".

You have to be the see-no-evil type to think this is about making love and friendships abroad! This is the vehicle through which Morocco interacts with Morgan Tsvangirai and his party, indeed the vehicle for meddling in Zimbabwe's electoral politics.

Morocco has funded the MDC-T both as a country and as a protégé state of Europe and America doing the bidding of both. Today there is an extra string on Morocco's bow.
She will be in the UN Security Council when Zimbabwe goes to the polls, something that gives a clue to our Prime Minister's itinerary. Think of Libya, think of UN in the 21st century. Like the much vaunted media, the UN goes to war as in Ivory Coast, or subcontracts wars to imperial states as in Libya. Zimbabwe beware!

On the global road again
[Dhewa Mavhinga]

Dhewa Mavhinga
[Grace Kwinjeh]

Grace Kwinjeh
The MDC-T has restored its machinery for global campaigning. The likes of Dhewa Mavhinga and Grace Kwinjeh are about to be redeployed to do exactly what they were doing before 2007/8. Kwinjeh will leave Rwanda for the new posting, if she has not done so already.

As we move towards elections, this dimension of the MDC-T will become more crucial, more visible. I should not waste time. Or equivocate because of sensitivities. The MDC-T, as inspired by its backers, has three main scenarios through which it hopes to turn the tables against Zanu-PF in the next poll. The sad thing is that none of the three scenarios relates to or relies on the party's internal effort, resources or support. In all the three, the exogenous is crucial, itself a clear indication that on the ground, MDC-T can no longer rely on numbers, on the ballot.

Wishing Mugabe dead
Foremost in its three scenarios is the President's long-wished incapacitation related to both "illness" and old age. Incapacitation is in fact a euphemism. The party prays and hopes for President Mugabe's demise, by whatever cause. In reality, this is the hope of the British and the Americans, and because of that, it has become the hope of the MDC-T. Mugabe must not be well enough to run in the next poll. Better still, he must not be around. Such is the sinister wish of MDC-T, as told by its handlers. Today when the MDC-T is looking at grabbing power, it trains its eyes not on the ballot box, but on the President's breath and pulse.

That is what democratic change has come to mean for them. Far more critical to it than holding rallies and doing mobilisation work is deploying newsmen and newswomen to watch how the President has woken up, how he breathes, how he walks, how he talks, how he thinks and how he presides over state functions.
It is also to keep a meticulous tab on when and how often he goes to Singapore, or to the Medical Chambers. Singapore, that financial centre of the world, to them trims down to one city-state hospital for an ailing Zimbabwean President. And in all these activities and travels, the belief is the President is going, inexorably.

The first ones to let you down . . .
I do not need to tell you that every American ambassador who deploys to Zimbabwe obsesses about the health of the President, as indeed does all European envoys.
The latest act in that endeavour was when the British establishment dispatched the Anglican Archbishop, hoping with God's grace, his view on how much longer the President has to live, would be infallible, and thus more dependable that dispatches from envoys.

Needless to say the assessment from the holy man was not so musical to this whole macabre industry which thinks the President is lingering far too long.
You would think these embassies and the MDC-T are in the business of making coffins, of burying the dead. You recall an undertaker who used to ply his death business from the kopje area in the late eighties and nineties? His punch-line was: "We are the last ones to let you down!" Except with these would-be undertakers of Robert Mugabe, their punchline would rather be: "We are the first ones to let you down!"

When democrats count on God's hand
I want to take this matter a little further. The scenario is that the President is either incapacitated or dies one day soon, in office. The constitutional process kicks in.
Zanu-PF which has to quickly find a successor either breaks into warring shards, or produces a candidate who is either too unknown or too unprepared to rival Tsvangirai who then romps to victory. Such is the thinking in the MDC-T, clearly bizarre, clearly so full of many imponderables which these guys have no time for. In the first place it is predicated on the eternal wellness or immortality of Tsvangirai.

I hope this is well founded. Secondly, it rests on the willingness of God and his hand. Again, I hope those in the MDC-T have met with a flash, thunder and revelation of divinity!

Papering over the cracks
[How many of us know that Tsvangirai (r) himself got to know about violence in Chitungwiza when he was somewhere between Marondera and Harare, on his way from a golf match in Leopard Rock? Why was Chitungwiza not a priority for him? Was Biti representing his party or his faction which had planned to use the Chitungwiza rally as a show of force for a rival side within the MDC-T, led of course by the Prime Minister himself? ]

How many of us know that Tsvangirai (r) himself got to know about violence in Chitungwiza when he was somewhere between Marondera and Harare, on his way from a golf match in Leopard Rock? Why was Chitungwiza not a priority for him? Was Biti representing his party or his faction which had planned to use the Chitungwiza rally as a show of force for a rival side within the MDC-T, led of course by the Prime Minister himself?
Thirdly, it is a scenario which rests on the feigned cohesion within MDC-T. If you know a little about the goings-on in that organisation, you find such hopes quite astounding.
How many of us know that Tsvangirai himself got to know about violence in Chitungwiza when he was somewhere between Marondera and Harare, on his way from a golf match in Leopard Rock? Why was Chitungwiza not a priority for him? Why was Biti in the forefront of defending those who had been clobbered for provoking clashes?

Was Biti representing his party or his faction which had planned to use the Chitungwiza rally as a show of force for a rival side within the MDC-T, led of course by the Prime Minister himself? Who does not know that the battles of the Bulawayo Congress continue to blaze, undiminished? Who does not know that as matters stand, Biti has the provinces? Who does not know that relationships are being built by all factions, across parties? Above all, who does not know that the Tsvangirai side shed crocodile tears over the collapsed Chitungwiza rally; that unlike in Matabeleland North, Tsvangirai did not attempt to be in the situation, in the thick of things? Anyway, why was the media mum about more deadly clashes which pitted MDC-T youths groups against each other, which clashes Zanu-PF youths took full advantage of?

When nature abhors a vacuum
Fourthly and lastly, the scenario also suffers from the fallacy of thinking MDC-T is the only player in the politics of a Zimbabwe a day after Robert Mugabe. The fallacy that a post-Mugabe Zimbabwe is all for MDC taking! About this, let very little be said without taking away from its fraught-ness. My nature study teacher always emphasised that nature abhors a vacuum!

Praying for the Bulawayo scenario
The second scenario which the MDC-T dreams about is one in which God fails them, as he is sure to, and Robert Mugabe proceeds to elections, fit, sound and vigorously stabbing.
One senior MDC-T official, in a supposedly secretive brief with foreigners in South Africa, confessed this was one scenario he feared most. "We pray daily for the President's demise so that this scenario does not come to pass," he said, eyes supplicating the heavens. If you are a good watcher of Zimbabwe politics, you will notice that the MDC-T's news agents - all of them funded by the Americans - have been frantically trying to deal with this eventuality which seems more and more likely. The second scenario focuses on destabilising Zanu-PF ahead of, during and after, its Annual Conference in Bulawayo which has now been upgraded to a Congress in all but name. Bulawayo will see the Party deciding on its candidate for Presidency. Those behind the MDC-T are hoping that this decision becomes an entangled skein, so entangled and so bitter that the Party emerges mortally split, ahead of the 2012 polls. The hope is that such a split would reproduce 2007/8 scenario where a Mavambo emerges, kicking the ball into the wild, as the parlance goes.

[To this day the riddle of the late General's death has not been resolved, ironically with those who accused the late General of all sorts of misdeeds, today crusading for truth on this one matter. Of course it is not about the dead General; it is about opportunities which this tragedy provides for destabilising Zanu-PF.]

To this day the riddle of the late General's death has not been resolved, ironically with those who accused the late General of all sorts of misdeeds, today crusading for truth on this one matter. Of course it is not about the dead General; it is about opportunities which this tragedy provides for destabilising Zanu-PF.
Fomenting a second death
Two issues have been identified as triggers, with the third one just beginning to emerge. The sad demise of the war hero and first commander of the Zimbabwe National Army, General Solomon Mujuru, is supposed to be the key factor in entangling Bulawayo.

To this day the riddle of the late General's death has not been resolved, ironically with those who accused the late General of all sorts of misdeeds, today crusading for truth on this one matter. Of course it is not about the dead General; it is about opportunities which this tragedy provides for destabilising Zanu-PF.

When age ain't a number
The second factor is to focus on the President's age in the hope that ambitious elements will emerge from within Zanu-PF, to challenge the candidature of the President on that basis.
You do not have to be a rocket scientist to extract evidence of this in the current reportage. All sorts of conspiracies are being kneaded to suggest disaffection with the President's candidature, to suggest there is deep belief in his party he is past sale date and must be replaced by a more youthful alternative. Even little squabbles of party officials are given this wide-ranging resonance which finally connects to the President's candidature.

Spoiling the empowerment programme
The third factor of this scenario was meant to emerge from the traditional view of Matabeleland as a sidelined region. The hope was to use the Zimplats community empowerment breakthrough to suggest that only good things happen in Mashonaland, to be specific in the President's home province.

It is a pretext for a divisive lobby struggling for credence. But it is sure to be killed by the next such empowerment event which will be away from the President's home province, if that was ever a factor in the first empowerment instance. By starting with Zimplats, Zanu-PF did the right thing.

It targeted the biggest boy in the industry. The little ones can only fall in line, a factor not lost to the MDC-T. Tsvangirai's attempts at associating Kasukuwere with the mayhem in Chitungwiza is his own way of extending a favour to those who stand to be affected by the empowerment programme which the Minister is championing. He is hoping Kasukuwere can be indicted finally, or that he will begin to too busily fight such allegations to focus on his empowerment programme.

[The 10 percent community share ownership scheme, what I term "chegumi", is sure to galvanise community support for Zanu-PF, while showing the poor are Zanu-PF's targets.]

The 10 percent community share ownership scheme, what I term "chegumi", is sure to galvanise community support for Zanu-PF, while showing the poor are Zanu-PF's targets.
The wonders of chegumi
The MDC-T knows that the community empowerment scheme is an electoral killer punch, which is why it has turned its focus away from the ballot. The 10 percent community share ownership scheme, what I term "chegumi", is sure to galvanise community support for Zanu-PF, while showing the poor are Zanu-PF's targets. It does not take much imagination to see how this puts paid to MDC-T excuses for opposing the empowerment programme through false charges of corruption or sidelining the poor.

And if you consider that mining, specifically diamonds, and agriculture, specifically tobacco, have been the sole carriers of this economy, it becomes clear that both by actual performance in Government, and by way of policies, Zanu-PF has been the carrier of the State, even under conditions of inclusivity. MDC-T was not part of the campaign for the sale of Zimbabwe diamonds. It opposed Zimbabwe's certification, in the process siding with the country's enemies.

To this day, it still regrets the KPCS decision, with Eddie Cross verbalizing that regret. Much worse, diamond revenues have more than tripled what white miners acting on behalf of multinationals, have been able to remit to the Fiscus. Biti has refused to support farmers, with Zanu-PF moving in to fill the void created by a reluctant government.

It is hard to fathom how a man who kills the golden goose still hopes for the golden egg. MDC-T is not part of the agricultural miracle. And in both crucial sectors, it has been on the wrong side of history. That is most worrisome to the MDC-T, which is why its power-grabbing scenarios all revolve on its installation by external contingencies.

Responsibility to betray
The third scenario incorporates elements broached in the opening paragraphs, and much of what takes place between now and election day. Simply put, the MDC-T is hoping for a second Ivory Coast, or a second Libya. Both scenarios require proof of violence and undemocratic conduct so the UN notion of "responsibility to protect" kicks in.
Both require mobilisation of western opinions and willingness to intervene militarily. Both require the UN Security Council which must both legitimise and trigger intrusion.

With this scenario in mind, it is not difficult to read why MDC-T in fact needs the violence it provokes, indeed badly needs the victim status it craves for. Much worse, that violence, no matter how inter-party it may be, must indict the State, never mind that the State in question partly belongs to the complaining MDC-T. For purposes of legitimising intervention, Zimbabwe should become a one-party state! I hope the media unit created by the MDC-T ahead of the polls, and the global campaign I have alluded to, are beginning to fall into place, as indeed should Tsvangirai's seemingly chaotic itinerary.

This scenario needs a UN Secretary General, needs some show of supportive African vote in the Security Council, needs a former colonial power ready to intervene, alongside the imperial US. To say so is not to try and cause panic and despondency in the country. It is to equip everyone ahead of the danger that lies ahead.

A few sobering facts
But there are sobering facts stubbornly thrusting themselves from the ground. Russia and China have to be willing to play ball on this one. Or at the very least to be indifferent. The two are highly unlikely to be, both for bilateral reasons and on account of the lessons of Libya, fears over Iran and Syria.

Little is known about how China was such a crucial player over KPCS, in the process getting the US to back off. Its interests will not vanish because UK and US want war against the people of Zimbabwe, a war legitimised by Tsvangirai's MDC-T. The Russians are developing their interests, and will soon be a factor in the national market. Demographically, Zimbabwe has a sizeable white population for whom the prospects of a racialised war, which is what such a conflict will be, will be an engulfing disaster. About this, let me not say more.

[The MDC-T is hoping for a second Ivory Coast, or a second Libya. The MDC-T leadership will be inside Zimbabwe, indeed may not find it easy to escape or find a second Benghazi here. The war will visit us all, with its ugly consequences. ]

The MDC-T is hoping for a second Ivory Coast, or a second Libya. The MDC-T leadership will be inside Zimbabwe, indeed may not find it easy to escape or find a second Benghazi here. The war will visit us all, with its ugly consequences.
Zvinozibga neZanu
The MDC-T leadership will be inside Zimbabwe, indeed may not find it easy to escape or find a second Benghazi here. The war will visit us all, with its ugly consequences.
Maybe that is one time when we will all realize we are Zimbabweans, and that outsiders cannot be friends, cannot save us. Zimbabwe remains as heavily wooded as in the years of liberation struggle. It has not become a desert like Libya, with small settlements dotted along the coastline.

In war terms, we are a different kettle of fish. Similarly, those who fought in that war of liberation, while numerically diminished and old, remain in place to be a formidable resource in circumstances of national resistance. They also have a political framework by way of the Party. Lastly, this is Southern Africa, a region of acute colonial pains, fresh revolutions and embittered dreams awaiting fulfillment.

A throwback to colonial rule invites spontaneous reaction. Besides, the spirit of internationalism is real, a living tissue. Zimbabwe and her struggles has been important, too important for Africa to be left to perish. I thought I could help the Prime Minister and his party take these hard facts to heart, lest they dream bald, lest they build suicidal scenarios without realising it.

The scenario of war is one which will likely eat up all current contenders, leaving and passing on power to a brave new generation. The old war ditty plays in my mind, its words stark and foreboding: "Hona zvombo, tinazvo/Nemabara, tinawo/Ko rubatsiro ticharuwanepiko/ Zvinozibga neZanu!" Icho!


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(HERALD) Keep your gay England, we keep our Godly Zimbabwe

Keep your gay England, we keep our Godly Zimbabwe
Friday, 18 November 2011 00:00
Bowden Mbanje and Darlington Mahuku

Africa in the 21st century is still viewed by some myopic Western leaders as a continent that cannot survive without breadcrumbs from northern donors. It is pathetic and an insult to every African on the continent when our leaders are told to embrace homosexuality by a misguided British Prime Minister who still thinks the black man in Africa is blinkered. At times power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

The history of foreign aid can be traced back to the period after the Second World War. Much of Europe had been ravaged by war and the United States of America through the Marshall Plan, was very instrumental in providing aid for the reconstruction of Europe. The USA spent US$12 billion in the European Recovery Programme (ERP). Much of this money was in the form of grants from which no repayment was expected.
Thomas Bailey hailed this ERP as the economic blood transfusion which took the Europeans off their backs and put them on their feet. If Cameron was talking of such type of aid then Africa would have given him an ear.

The British premier sees Africa as a place full of miserable destitutes whose empty bowels need the benevolence of the white man to fill. Such thinking actually comes from sheer ignorance of the power that the continent now wields in terms of tapped and untapped resources. Africa sitting on such huge deposits of minerals is told by a leader of a country without a single diamond mine to enshrine gay rights or risk losing aid.

The Marshall Plan which was designed to aid recovery in Western Europe after the Second World War successfully achieved its mission of enabling the European countries to expand their post-war economic bases and we are yet to hear of an African country which after receiving aid from the British government ever developed to the level of Europe.

David Cameron's false democracy is not centred on aid but on Aids. He should wake up from his deep slumber and realise that the sun now sets in Britain.

The head of state and government, President Mugabe once told the former disgraced British premier Tony Blair to keep his cold England. As part of the 99, 99 percent of progressive Africans we reiterate the same statement to Cameron to keep his gay England.

The British have always capitalised on the economic poverty and political weakness of some African countries to advance their own selfish interests. They have always used foreign aid as one of their principal economic instruments to impress and win over countries in Africa to their neo-liberal side.

They have always been undertaking a strategy to put themselves front and centre on the stage of African politics and international relations. The disappearance of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s signalled not only a radical shift in the global power configuration in favour of the Western alliance (USA and EU) but it also triggered off democratisation demands by the West on Africa based on their national interest.

From the 1990s onwards the North could now afford to attach explicit political and institutional conditionalities to its aid without fear of losing most Third World countries to communism. Foreign assistance as an instrument of state craft was now being applied by Europe and America on several African countries as to induce compliance and to show progress towards democracy and human rights.

Foreign aid became closely tied to stabilisation and structural adjustment policy changes and to other socio-political concerns. In other words, Western foreign assistance was made to reflect progress towards market liberalisation and democratic reforms, which would serve their national interests quite well.

These conditionalities marked a new form of colonialism which Nkrumah, clearly described as "neo-colonialism", whereby a country has all the trappings of independence, yet its economy is controlled from abroad. The West therefore designed policies which specified that in their foreign aid allocations they also took their own national interests into account. These interests included maintenance of spheres of influence, political or military alliances and promotion of their investments and exports.

This ensuing asymmetry of domination and dependence has virtually characterised the relationship between Africa and the West. Aid has provided the North with the opportunity to intervene and influence the socio-political and economic life in most African states. Through project support, the West has been able to control indirectly the direction and pattern of Africa's development process via country development programmes and no wonder Cameron brags that he will withdraw such funding. A closer look at foreign aid in Africa reveals that the North has not only fashioned the structure of the aid relationship but it also determines who should get what, when and how. Africa's high degree on foreign assistance has translated itself into almost total surrender of national sovereignty.

Moreover, the African state's excessive dependence on foreign aid has gradually eroded its capacity to design and implement policies and strategies that will enhance indigenisation thus promoting economic growth.

In the absence of credible policies and effective institutions on the continent, the West has increasingly usurped the role of policy management eroding socialist policies which would have empowered the masses.

Any policy that intends to give Blacks a share of their country's resources does not get any funding from the West. Such policies include those of indigenisation and economic empowerment.

Foreign aid has actually decreased national control and increased donor control over the political and internal economy of most African states. Aid is used more as a realist stratagem to advance the interests of the aid giver at the expense of the recipient country.

The whole issue of aid, whether for humanitarian or developmental needs, is anchored on the belief that the West has the legal right to dictate to Africa on who should benefit from such false philanthropism.

Foreign aid is now being openly used as a strategy for exploitation and external control of Africa. The economic inequality among different actors in the global political economy has translated into an uneven distribution of opportunities.

Side by side with the social and political inequalities is the inability of the poor and weak to determine how foreign aid should be used since the aid regime is usually a monopoly of the powerful Western countries.

As we have always argued in our articles, the push for gay rights is yet another renewed camouflaging tendency of the foreign aid regime used by the Western powers to create governance structures that are conducive for the exploitation and external control of weak African states.

In the name of human rights Britain and its allies want to restore and consolidate what was once achieved through the strong political administration of colonialism.

Development assistance in Africa has tended to supplant local capacity, undermine local knowledge and institutions. Recipient countries have been made more vulnerable and dependent on aid. Western aid projects, plans and programmes should be derived from Africa's development and cultural priorities and should not be an expression of an attitude by these donors that they know better, they lecture and Africa listens, they know and recipient countries learn and they take care of the things because Africans cannot.

Aid that undermines the continent's capacity and sense of ownership of policies and programmes cannot support sustainable growth. It perpetuates dependence.
Western development assistance should be driven and guided by Africa's development priorities and capacity building strategies. Foreign aid that does not have a clear path to sustainable capacity building and growth is of little or no value. African governments should out rightly reject such foreign aid. Britain and her allies should stop pushing blueprints for development written at their headquarters. They should move away from supply-driven projects and tied aid. Sometimes these projects have had temporary successes at the micro level but have been irrelevant and thus a waste of scarce resources at the macro and sectoral levels.

If Cameron's aid is sincere he should not impose his idealistic blueprints of good governance and human rights written in London. Democracy also needs to take in an African component if it is to remain viable on the continent.

Imposing alien gay rights on a continent that still values its cultural norms will always be met with stiff resistance from various sections of African society. Democracy is a process and in each process there are likely to be positive and negative aspects. A relationship based on mutual interest and not exploitation should be forged.

International politics has changed quite a lot in the twenty-first century and if the Western governments do not engage in genuine partnership with Africa on an equal footing, then the continent may consider other options such as India, China or South America. Politics is all about a struggle for power and scarce resources.

* Bowden BC Mbanje and Darlington N Mahuku are lecturers in International Relations, and Peace and Governance with Bindura University.

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(HERALD) Zimplats denies tax evasion

Zimplats denies tax evasion
Friday, 18 November 2011 00:00
Business Reporter

ZIMPLATS has dismissed claims that it owes the Government US$265 million in taxes and penalties not honoured to the State as contained in a report compiled by international audit experts Alex Stewart.

According to the auditors' report on Zimplats, the unpaid monies are comprised of US$70 million in unpaid additional tax profit, US$70 million penalty for late payment of tax and US$125 million interest for late payment.

In their report submitted to the Reserve Bank in 2008, Alex Stewart International concluded Zimplats had neither computed nor paid additional tax profits between 2001 and 2007, as required in terms of the Income Tax Act.

ASI had undertaken the mineral export audit at the instigation of the central bank, in terms of Statutory Instrument 249 of 2006, on suspicion a number of mining firms had not honoured their tax obligations to the State.

It was feared that during the period investigated, the country could have been prejudiced by mining firms of more than US$400 million in unpaid taxes.

But the country's biggest platinum mining firm denies any delinquency in paying its dues to the State, rather it claims ASI's conclusions are riddled with errors.

"ASI computations were erroneous and, as a result, grossly overstated the amount that Zimplats was liable for. The correct amount was assessed and paid by Zimplats to the relevant arm of Government," said Zimplats.

Zimplats claimed ASI's initial computation showed a liability of US$70 million, but insists the errors in the computations inflated the amounts due.

"Apart from more fundamental errors on the interpretation of the provisions of the Income Tax Act, the computation has basic arithmetic and duplication errors, which have the effect of inflating the amount due."

The platinum mining giant added that a correction of "just three" of the errors reduced the liability, as per computations done by ASI, by US$30 million.

But a computation by tax experts engaged by Zimplats concluded the firm owed just over US$23,4 million and that this obligation had been fully paid.

The 87 percent owned unit of South Africa's Impala Platinum Holdings said the fact ASI were an international firm did not mean they were infallible or that their report alleging non-payment of taxes cannot be challenged.

Zimplats said "ASI computations were strewn with errors (arithmetic, duplication and misrepresentation of the Act)," resulting in overstatement of principal liability and that use of a 340 percent interest rate on US dollar liability was "incorrect and therefore the interest was overstated".

The errors were brought to the attention of both the RBZ and ASI, but the latter would not "unfortunately" act to correct them.

During a recent presentation before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Budget and Finance, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr Gideon Gono indicated there was no political will to take ASI's findings to a court of law for purposes of recovering the monies.

ASI has since taken the central bank to court claiming US$35 million, plus interest, for work they did but were not paid. The agreement had been that they would be paid a commission on the recovered taxes.

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

(NEWZIMBABWE) How Obert Mpofu tamed America

How Obert Mpofu tamed America
16/11/2011 00:00:00
by Tafadzwa Msarara

“Mr Chairman, what we have here in this debate over certification of Marange diamond fields is a fight pitting an elephant and an ant. Not only do we have the elephant willing to trample on the ant alone but goes to call other elephants namely the EU, Canada and their western allies. Guess what Mr Chairman, facts are stubborn. In this instance, facts are in our favour because the two mines are compliant as declared by the joint working group on monitoring which was set up and established with knowledge and consent of the USA.”

Zimbabwe's Mines Minister Obert Mpofu to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme at the Jerusalem Plenary

It is fashionable and award-winning in third world countries to pen documents viciously attacking government leaders and their policies. Behold, credit must be given where it is due.

Obert Mpofu was assigned by his boss, President Mugabe, to carry the most difficult task in the history of the Kimberly Process of seeking certification of diamond mines located in the most potent area in the world, where a western declared “rogue” government is superintending their disposal.

What is striking the most is that Mpofu achieved that in three years despite being himself slapped with a travel ban by some of the KP’s most influential countries including the USA. It is common knowledge that the USA is the United Nations and vice versa. This unfortunate trend is quickly creeping into KP.

Mpofu’s biggest ammunition he had on his side was a hard working team comprising of the Attorney General Johannes Tomana, legal advisor Farai Mutamangira and his senior ministry officials. The three opponents to the certification led by the USA played all tricks in order to frustrate the Zimbabwe bid. At one time in the morning, the USA legal team promised Tomana and Mutamangira that they meet in 10 minutes to “finalise on the Marange outstanding issues”.

The USA team came back to the hall at 11PM and found Mpofu and his team ready and waiting. Of course the plan was to meet the Zimbabweans when they are drained and desperate.

I feared these tough negotiations were going to take a toll on Mpofu’s health given his age and weight, but the man was wide awake and alert all the times. These westerners are deadly in mind warfare, but in Cde Obert Mpofu, they met their match.

I also remember in Jerusalem, the KPCS chairman suggested that the Zimbabwe team meet the three opposing members together with their civil society so that they “iron out differences” and obtain consensus. The USA, the EU and Canada were leveraging on a KPCS consensus rule that dictates that all decisions get the agreement of all participating members. No decision will be made in KP even if the contending participant is being unreasonable.

During the heated meeting, and it became apparent that consensus was not forthcoming; Mpofu switched on Farai Mutamangira’s microphone and then came the young firebrand lawyer.

“It seems that putting us in a room with the USA is like having Israel and Iran locked in one room and hope consensus will be reached. We have a bully who continues to flout international law in an attempt to punish the President of Zimbabwe and his ministers at every turn and twist. This plenary is no exception,” Mutamangira said.

The whole room fell into deafening silence and I knew Mpofu had planned that in order to demonstrate to other mediating participants the extent of the hostile relations between Zimbabwe and the USA. The support for Zimbabwe by African countries grew and surprise, surprise, we saw Sierra Leone warming up to Zimbabwe’s cause. That’s shrewdness!

During the Kinshasa plenary, Susan Page walked in with a host of USA Central Intelligence Agents (CIA) in tow masquerading as diamond experts. This time around, the USA was blowing hot and cold because we had other officials who were making diplomatic overtures like the second in charge at the USA embassy in Harare, and the rest were shouting hoarse at the “human rights violations” in Marange. I could see my brother Shamiso Mtisi of NANGO very relaxed and cosy in the midst of this USA delegation in a typical baas boy fashion.

When time for closed group meetings came, the three musketeers together with their civil society partners were ready to pounce on Mpofu with new charges of human rights violation – which included a claim that an Air Force of Zimbabwe gunship killed hundreds of illegal panners a week before President Mugabe’ visit to the area.

Mpofu pulled a stunt. He sent the South African representative with a message to the sub-group chairman that he will not be coming to discuss Marange because the two mines were now KPCS compliant. Any other issues must be discussed as work in progress and not as a pre-condition of certifying the two mines. I could see dejection on the plotters’ faces because the plot could not be concluded in the absence of Zimbabwe’s Minister.

A representative of one of the USA’s allies, the United Arab Emirates, said: “I came to Kinshasa hoping that we will conclude this Marange issue at last. My country is in possession of Marange diamonds intercepted by security agents in our country enroute to India. We have sought legal advice on the matter from one of the world top lawyers. They have told us that our discussion to seize the parcel is defective at law and we are working towards complying with that legal opinion. Please can we have this matter off our back.”

The cat was out of the bag!

It is the convincing arguments advanced by Mpofu that made other African countries realise that what is happening to Zimbabwe can befall them in the future. This led to the formation of the African Diamond Producers Association (ADPA) because African participants claimed that they produce 70% of the world diamond but continue to be treated as junior members. Therefore, they needed to unite and up the game.

The victory on the certification of Mbada and Marange must not be confined to the two mines but to all future KPCS certification where Zimbabwean black capital is involved. Whilst every Zimbabwean is entitled to demand the full account of Marange Diamonds receipts, we should be mindful of other wholly-owned foreign mining ventures across Zimbabwe that are yet to give account of their wealth.

Yes, indeed the diamond must benefit everyone in Zimbabwe and it is the collective right and responsibility of Zimbabweans to dispose their own resources as enshrined in the UN Charter. However, it is refreshing to win the fight against external forces that were bent on denying us our privilege to export.

“For answering to a call to be part of a revolution that frees fellow countrymen socially and economically, you are a true hero. But for defending the virtues of the revolution after attaining victory, you are a super hero,” said Che Guevara.
Tafadzwa Musarara is the Chairman of Africa Economic Development Strategies. You may contact him on

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(NEWZIMBABWE) Diamond rush hits Beitbridge

Diamond rush hits Beitbridge
17/11/2011 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

RUMOURS of the discovery of diamond deposits in a small village in Beitbridge have triggered a wave of human traffic to the area. The stampede began last month after a Harare man, named locally as Rasim Kassim, was granted a prospector’s licence to explore for aquamarine – a blue-green variety of the mineral beryl, from the same family as emeralds.

Word soon went round that Kassim was in fact trying to disguise a diamond find, and since then fortune hunters have piled in to the Ponongoma area, near Zezane Mission, to dig for gemstones.

Locals have put up barricades to block access to the area, while deploying a night watchman to stop diggers who are arriving in the area on bicycles, motorbikes and cars – in their number teachers, nurses, bus drivers, goat-herders, schoolchildren and street kids.

A local community leader, Headman Mazibeli, said excavations by both Kassim and the illegal diamond diggers had desecrated an old graveyard. Tapson Mlaudzi, 83, has lived all his life in the area and says he has never seen anything like it.

“Every night, when a member of the neighbourhood watch guarding the site has gone home to sleep, people, including some villagers, go in and dig around,” Mlaudzi said.

“There are usually a number of cars that come here every night. We know there are diamonds here because no-one can go through the effort of digging through all that rock for nothing.”

Malaji Mbedzi, 61, the leader of the local neighbourhood watch said: “It’s out of control. I don’t know where these people who bring cars here at night come from. The government should act on this urgently because I also need to sleep.

“I don’t know of anyone who has found diamonds here. If there are any, people from this poor area should be the first to benefit.”

David Alphonse Mpofu, the Provincial Administrator for Matabeleland South, said officials would be visiting the area next week to assess the situation.

“Reports have been made to the police and the district administrator’s office. It clearly needs attention and we will send teams there to try and understand what’s going on,” he said by telephone from Gwanda.

Mbedzi said Kassim was last in the area on Monday this week after turning up with “two white men” whom he introduced as American investors.

He added: “He was angry when he found evidence that someone had tampered with the mine. He said he had already bought machines and would soon be setting up a proper mining venture.”

Officials say although Kassim’s licence is for aquamarine, he can convert this to another mineral through a simple administrative procedure.



(ZAMBIANWATCHDOG) Musokototwane arrested as UPND/MMD MPs agree to boycott budget debate in parliament

Musokototwane arrested as UPND/MMD MPs agree to boycott budget debate in parliament
November 17, 2011 | Filed under: Zambia |

Former Finance Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane has been arrested over the bicycles police found at his house in Makeni.

And the UPND MPs have agreed to show solidarity with fellow opposition MPs from the MMD who are being arrested.

Musokotwane is the second former minister to be arrested in two days after Maxwell Mwale was arrested on Wednesday.

UPND MPs met at parliament motel last night and agreed to join MMD MPs to boycott the debate on the 2012 budget.

The MPs from MMD and UPND plan to physically stay out of the house as a way of protesting what they see as political manouvre by the ruling party to reduce the number of MPs in the house.

The ruling party does not have the number of MPs required to approve the budget.

Musokotwane was arrested at Woodlands police station and by mid-morning of Thursday, his lawyers were fighting for a police bond.

On October 7, police raided Musokotwane’s house and confiscated over 1,000 bicycles.

“We want to investigate the matter and find out how the bicycles were procured, for what purpose and with what resources,” then police spokesperson Ndandula Siamana said.

She said Musokotwane co-operated with the police officers who visited his house and allowed them to investigate the matter.

And Ms Siamana said Musokotwane’s wife said the bicycles were for personal use and not for the public.

She said Mrs Musokotwane told police officers the bicycles were meant for campaigns, but that the law enforcement agency is yet to confirm that.

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Police arrest former mines minister over bicycles

Police arrest former mines minister over bicycles
By Chibaula Silwamba and Roy Habaalu
Thu 17 Nov. 2011, 14:00 CAT

POLICE yesterday arrested former minister of mines Maxwell Mwale in connection with bicycles and he will appear in court today. Police spokesperson Elizabeth Kanjela confirmed the arrest of Mwale.

"The offence is conveying stolen property and he will appear in court tomorrow today," said Kanjela.

Mwale, who is member of parliament for Malambo in Eastern Province, was remanded in custody at Woodlands Police Station in Lusaka at 15:00 hours yesterday.

Police last month seized 300 bicycles from Mwale's farm.

On Tuesday, police arrested former president Rupiah Banda's then senior private secretary Robinson Nkonde in connection with the former president's campaign vehicles, bicycles and other materials that were registered in Nkonde's name.

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Ex-DEC chief gets K5m bail

Ex-DEC chief gets K5m bail
By Maluba Jere
Thu 17 Nov. 2011, 14:00 CAT

FORMER Drug Enforcement Commission chief Aaron Zulu has been granted K5 million cash bail after appearing in the magistrates' court on a charge of abuse of authority of office.

57-year-old Zulu of house number three Jesmondine, who first appeared before chief resident magistrate Joshua Banda, had his matter allocated to principal resident magistrate Aridah Chulu where he appeared for mention.

When the case was called, Zambia Police senior legal officer Simon Tembo told magistrate Chulu that the matter was coming up for mention as the state was still awaiting consent from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

Tembo told the court that the matter should be mentioned and that Zulu should appear in court for another mention on November 23, 2011.

Zulu's lawyer Sakwiba Sikota applied for bail, saying the offence his client was charged with was bailable.

Sikota said Zulu was of fixed abode and that until his recent retirement as commissioner at DEC, he was in gainful employment.

He said Zulu was a Zambian who was able to provide sureties in an event that he is granted bail.

The state did not object to the bail application.

Magistrate Chulu then granted Zulu K5 million bail with two working sureties in the like sum but in their own recognisance.

Zulu, who was arrested on Tuesday, is charged with one count of abuse of authority of office contrary to Section 99 (1) of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia.

It is alleged that Zulu on July 8, 2011, in Lusaka, being a person employed in the public service, namely DEC as commissioner abused the authority of his office and in breach of the laid down procedures sold or directed the sale of 118.897 kilogrammes of gold to Societe Financier Du Seujut SA at a value less than the market price, an act prejudicial to the rights or interests of the government.

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Government dependency on domestic borrowing worries ZNFU

Government dependency on domestic borrowing worries ZNFU
By Chiwoyu Sinyangwe
Thu 17 Nov. 2011, 14:00 CAT

ZNFU fears that the government's plan to finance 21.1 per cent of the 2012 national budget via domestic borrowings is likely to counter intentions of freeing more liquidity to local entrepreneurs. The Zambia National Farmers Union stated that it would have preferred to see the government mobilise money via broadening the tax revenue base.

The influential union of commercial and smallholder farmers in the country stated that the proposed government borrowing of 1.3 per cent of the GDP was likely to "crowd out" as commercial banks will find it attractive to lend to the government than to the agriculture sector because of the perceived risk of the sector.

"The proposed government borrowing from the domestic market of about 21.1 per cent of the total budget will create competition with the private sector on domestic borrowing," ZNFU stated.

"Government should consider broadening the tax base as opposed to resorting to domestic borrowing in the long term so that resources from the domestic market can be freed to the private sector. This will help stimulate private sector borrowing and investment so as to create the much-needed employment and further revenue for the government."

ZNFU supported the government's efforts to help reduce the cost of finance after it reduced corporate tax by commercial banks to standard 35 per cent from the previous 40 per cent on the backdrop of the reduction in statutory reserve ratios which would create an extra K700 billion in commercial banks to lend out.

ZNFU also stated that there was need to address the import duty on agriculture inputs and zero-rate value added tax on agriculture products and also remove livestock levies hindering the development of the livestock sector.

The farmers body stated that the fuel levy paid by the agriculture sector, which they said doesn't serve its purpose, also needed to be removed.

And ZNFU applauded the PF government for allocating about K 1.7 trillion of its inaugural K27. 7 trillion towards the agriculture sector, a jump from K1.2 trillion in 2011.

ZNFU, however, stated that the 2012 agriculture allocation of six per cent was still short of government commitment of increasing agriculture sector allocation to 10 per cent in line with the Maputo declaration and under the Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) to propel the agriculture sector to higher heights and contribute to inclusive growth.

ZNFU stated that it was "enthralled" that the 2012 national budget recognized constraints facing the agriculture sector and proposed strategies of ensuring that key factors affecting the sector are addressed.

"Issues raised which are of importance to the Union include the fact that the agriculture sector still suffers from low productivity, is still rain dependent, lacks appropriate and affordable breeding stocks, low value addition, and is hindered by poor marketing and low investments," stated ZNFU.

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NGOCC calls for scrutiny of appointees

NGOCC calls for scrutiny of appointees
By Kombe Chimpinde
Thu 17 Nov. 2011, 13:59 CAT

NGOCC has called for serious scrutiny and consultation over people that are being appointed to the public service by President Michael Sata.

Commenting on President Sata's revocation of the appointment of former ministry of health permanent secretary Dr Simon Miti, as ambassador designate to Switzerland, Non-Governmental Coordinating Council (NGOCC) board chairperson Beatrice Grillo said that the appointment of people with questionable track records would dent the fight against corruption.

"As women movement, we have to state categorically that these appointments have been revoked because they were not in line with the government's fight against corruption," Grillo said.

"The President has come out clearly that he is allergic to corruption. Now appointing people with issues that are still before the courts would dent his image as a fighter against corruption."

She said there was need for President Sata to scrutinise every appointment
before it was done and announced.

"We are also concerned because it is sending the wrong message; it's like there is no consultation and reflection on these appointments and I think this is not good. We are hoping the process of consultation is streamlined, it should be before they come to the public because it is embarrassing that people are appointed and later dropped after people have cried out," Grillo said.

"We are saying the appointments must be screened before they have been made and announced."

Grillo said NGOCC was saddened with the appointment of Dr Miti who is a key witness in a serious corruption scandal.

President Sata on Tuesday revoked the appointment of Dr Miti as Zambia's ambassador to Switzerland.

In revoking the appointment, the President directed the Secretary to the Cabinet to furnish him with a full report regarding Dr Miti's employment status in the civil service.

Dr Miti has been on forced leave since 2009 following investigations into the K27 billion corruption scam which occurred at the Ministry of Health during his tenure as permanent secretary.

Soon after being put on forced leave, Dr Miti wrote to then president Rupiah Banda explaining himself over the investigations on public funds embezzlement. In his letter dated May 24, 2009 to Banda through presidential principal private secretary Austin Sichinga, Dr Miti gave his reflections and observations on the financial scam in the Ministry of Health and his family ties to the head of state.

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Nevers resisting recall - Sata

Nevers resisting recall - Sata
By Speedwell Mupuchi and Chibaula Silwamba
Thu 17 Nov. 2011, 14:00 CAT

PRESIDENT Michael Sata yesterday said Pastor Nevers Mumba has been resisting his recall and expressed concern over the allegations of financial irregularities at the Zambian High Commission in Canada. But when contacted for comment, Pastor Mumba said God should be judge between President Sata and himself.

According to a media statement from presidential spokesperson George Chellah, the President said the information he had so far obtained suggested serious financial impropriety at the Zambian mission in Toronto, which is under the supervision of Dr Mumba.

"President Sata has learnt that Dr Mumba intends to travel to Zambia on a private visit soon. The President hopes this visit will provide the law enforcement agencies an opportunity to engage Dr Mumba on the financial matters at the mission," Chellah stated.

According to Chellah, President Sata said: "Dr Mumba has been resisting his recall but we are now informed that he is coming on a private visit for some political engagements in Zambia. We hope that Dr Mumba's visit is a self-sponsored one because if not, the state shall recover from him any taxpayers' money that would be spent on this purely private adventure."

In reaction, Pastor Mumba expressed shock that a head of state could make such a statement about him.

"That information about misappropriation of funds is very shocking because this mission has run as professionally as possible. I am willing to have the accounts of the commission looked into. I wish the Auditor General herself, Anna Chifungula, could come and go through our accounts," said Pastor Mumba.

"I have no idea where the President got that information. If I knew which areas of misappropriation, perhaps answers could be provided. However, the President knows my number, my direct line, our fax number, I would have appreciated in the spirit of respecting those that are serving our country for him to inquire with me before making such a statement aimed at assassinating my name."

Pastor Mumba said there was a system in which government issues were dealt with and not issuing press statements about an officer even before they are heard.

He wondered what recourse he had if the head of state had already pronounced him guilty.

Pastor Mumba explained that in his two and half years of service in the Zambian mission in Canada, he received two audit issues; one internal from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and another from the Auditor General's office.

He explained that auditors only sought clarification on education allowances paid to different staff members in terms of the numbers of registered children and that responses were provided.

"I am very proud with not only how we have managed the mission financially but also with the performance of the High Commission, how it has lifted the profile of Zambia in Canada and have given it a respectable name. And one would hope that the President would wish to talk about that," he said.

"The irregularities they are talking about do not exist. I have never touched a single ngwee of government here as a High Commissioner, not even in Zambia as Republican vice-president. It has never been my nature. I have no history in government as vice-president and now as High Commissioner of abusing or taking government money for my own gain."

On resisting his being recalled, Pastor Mumba said when he received the letter, out of concern for the image of Zambia, he requested that he be given three month's notice as per conditions of service.

"There was no military coup in Zambia; it was an ordinary change of government. We made a name as a democracy with the smooth change of government, and Canada was proud of us and congratulated us and to see a High Commissioner running away within two days, I thought it was not good for the image of the country," explained Pastor Mumba.

Pastor Mumba said he wrote Lusaka, demanding that he be given three months notice and that Lusaka responded by withdrawing the first recall and gave him the three months notice.

He said within that time, he would prepare his family for departure as per normal practice, bid farewell to Canada and other countries of extra accreditation.

Pastor Mumba who was also accredited to Cuba, Bahamas, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica and Grenada, said what he did was good for Zambia's image and wondered why President Sata called it resisting call.

"I am shocked and disappointed," he said.

Pastor Mumba said his coming to Zambia was to prepare for his family's return to Zambia and that he duly applied to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs who rejected his application on the basis that he was on recall.

"I have obliged to that," he said.

He said his return to Zambia was going to be at his cost, not the government's.

Pastor Mumba said he did not expect the head of state who knew that if one was on local leave, he could not utilise government money, to have issued the statement.

"The President works with information and not with slander. I consider this press statement made specifically about Nevers Mumba and the High Commission in Canada to be politically motivated. I am sure the President is reacting to some calls in the media that I contest the MMD presidency," he said.

"I have never even responded or announced my candidature. That kind of attack will never deter me from pursuing what I believe to be God's will in my life. May God be the judge between President Sata and Nevers Mumba in this matter. I think that the President should have waited until I made an indication of my political direction. I am ready to fight politically."

Meanwhile, President Sata has named a 20-member technical committee to draft the new Republican Constitution.

President Sata said in carrying out its functions, the technical committee shall refer to all previous constitutional Review Commissions.

"They are expected to refer to the Chona Constitutional Review Commission, Mvunga Constitutional Review Commission, the 1991 Constitution of Zambia, and the John Mwanakatwe Constitutional Review Commission Report and Draft Constitution," President Sata said.

"The Technical Committee will also review the Willa Mung'omba Constitutional Review Report and Draft Constitution as well as the Mwangala Zaloumis Electoral Reform Technical Committee Report and the National Constitutional Conference (NCC) Report and Draft Constitution," President Sata said.

He emphasised that the technical committee shall review the Mung'omba Draft Constitution and use it as the basis upon to develop the new constitution.

He said the technical committee is also expected to consult widely and take into account the submissions forwarded.

"They are expected to consult local and international experts on constitutional law and practice, the members of the public at all provincial centres and incorporate in the new national constitution the views of the people as resolved in the provincial constitutional conventions."

According to the media statement, the committee was furthermore expected to consult and take into account the submissions of sector groups.

"The technical committee shall draft the national constitution based on its findings from the review process and best international constitutional practices and provisions of international conventions on human rights," President Sata said.

"They shall also draft the Constitution of Zambia Bill to set the commencement date for the new Constitution, deal with transitional and other issues for the effective transition into a new constitutional regime under the Fourth Republic to be enacted by Parliament."

He said the committee shall draw up its programme of work and submit the same to the Secretary to Cabinet within seven days of its first sitting.

President Sata directed the committee to submit the whole report to him.


The Technical Committee shall be composed of the following eminent experts:

1. Hon. Justice Annel Silungwe, SC Former Chief Justice shall be Chairperson

2. Dr. J.B. Sakala of JB Sakala and Company shall be Vice-Chairperson

3. Rev. Suzanne Matale, Council of Churches

4. Mr. Willa Mung'omba, Mungo'omba Associates

5. Hon. Sebastian S. Zulu SC, Minister of Justice

6. Ms. Charity Mwansa, permanent secretary-Lusaka Province

7. Professor Patrick Mvunga, Mvunga and Associates

8. Chief Luchembe, Northern Province

9. Prof. Margaret Munalula, University of Zambia

10. Mr. Ernest Mwansa, Mwansa Phiri and Partners

11. Dr. Rodger Chongwe, Chongwe and Associates

12. Mr. Paulman Chungu, Law Association of Zambia

13. Mr. Simon Kabanda, Citizens Forum

14. Mr. Reuben Lifuka, Transparency International-Zambia

15. Mrs. Mwangala Zaloumis, Dove Chambers

16. Dr. Winnie Sithole-Mwenda, Ministry of Justice

17. Mrs. Thandiwe D. Oteng, Ministry of Justice, who shall be the Secretary to the Committee

18. Three Catholic Bishops

The technical committee shall be supported and advised by the following draftspersons:

Mrs. Eva Jhala, Bemvi Consultants

Mrs. Patricia D. Jere, chief parliamentary counsel, Ministry of Justice

Mr. Andrew Nkunika, acting principal parliamentary counsel, Ministry of Justice

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