Saturday, March 31, 2012

(GLOBALRESEARCH) The U.S. Tolerates Domestic Extra-Judicial Killings, Persecution, Racial Discrimination, and Genocide

The U.S. Tolerates Domestic Extra-Judicial Killings, Persecution, Racial Discrimination, and Genocide
Justice for Trayvon Martin Also Means Joining the International Struggle Against U.S. Lawlessness
by Cynthia McKinney
Global Research, March 31, 2012

As a mother of a young Black man whom I pray for nightly and worry daily about his life being violently ended senselessly either by someone marginalized by the unjust social structure of U.S. life or by some rogue officer of the law or one pretending to be a policeman, I offer my sincerest condolences to the Martin family and friends over their loss of their son Trayvon. Each loss is irreparable and I have no words that can succor the pain that this entire nation is feeling. Further, I wish to extend my compassionate sympathies to the hundreds of thousands of victims of police brutality, racial profiling, and the millions wrongfully ensnared in the American gulag prison-industrial complex.

All of my life, no matter how my reputation has been assailed and vilified, I have struggled to promote justice and dignity to those people most adversely affected by the racist, intolerant, predatorily capitalistic, and venal society that we increasingly see metastasize daily into a society with a feel more and more like when Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, or Martin Luther King, or martyred Floridian Harry T. Moore walked the Earth decades ago.

April 4, 2012 will mark the 44th anniversary of our observance of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King; Jr. April 29, 2012 marks the twentieth anniversary of the Los Angeles Uprising of 1992. According to Dr. King, the U.S. was “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world.”

Forty-five years later this fact remains true with some frightening new additions. The U.S. imprisons more of its citizens per 100,000 persons than any other nation on earth. In 2011, the USA ranked fifth in the world in execution of prisoners, and annually police murder scores of citizens. If the number of persons murdered by the police were included in the sum of executions, America would rank third in executions globally—just behind Iran. In spite of the fact that the United States ratified the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) which obligates all levels of government to comply with the treaty, the United States Department of Justice, according to the ACLU 2009 report regarding the persistence of racial profiling in the United States has done virtually nothing to combat the clear evidence of systemic racism the nation. Therefore, I cannot say that anyone can be certain that justice will be served to the many Trayvon Martins and their grieving families. It is sobering and hurtful to believe that America’s first Black President and first Black Attorney General will allow this nation to possibly descend into greater levels of intolerance and tension, when the laws and mechanisms to address the problems exist on the books.

This should be an easy one for the people of this country to face. President Obama called for us to push him to stand for the people. Now is the time for us to push so hard that President Obama has no choice but to stand and show us--who are tired of mourning Stolen Lives in this country--that he is equally able to lead as well as compromise and bow to his political rivals. President Obama, along with the people of this country, can act and begin to remove the legacy of hatred, violence, and injustice before the U.S. is consumed by it--because our community of leaders and followers lacked the will to be a better society.

To the people who care and sacrifice daily for the marginalized and the dispossessed among us, I wish to remind you that I led a Congressional delegation to the United Nations World Conference on Racism in Durban South Africa in 2001 despite President Bush and Zionists daring us to go. It was my hope that the African American leadership would discover the realm of international law, as was the dream of Dubois, William Patterson, Paul Robeson, Malcolm X, and Dr. King. The traditional Civil Rights leadership must become more effective and adroit in presenting the plight of our human rights before the international community. We have enough experience to know that our progress has always been linked to international pressure because we are in a ‘majoritarian democracy’ that tramples on the rights of minorities.

We must push within and without the United States to bring the egregious slaughter of our young people and the mass incarceration and oppression of Black and Brown people to an end using all tools that we can secure. We cannot wait for another so-called ‘random slaying.’ It is clear that the President does not speak in our names when he denies the existence of racism (in the United Nations follow-up Durban conferences) as he has done twice. We know that we are world citizens with rights that every Mark Furman, Rick Santorum, or George Zimmerman must respect--even if our only venue for redress is before the people of the world. Chattel slavery and Jim Crow Apartheid were, in part, overturned because of the joint domestic and international efforts. Let us honor the agreement of Dr. King and Malcolm X to have a two-fold struggle for our human rights and full freedom. In the 1940s, we called this the double victory over Nazism and fascism abroad and racism and Jim Crow at home.

At home, the U.S. tolerates extra-judicial killings, violation of human rights, persecution, racial discrimination, and genocide--yes, genocide. So, if leadership inside the U.S. will do this to their own citizens, what is done to others outside the U.S. should come as no surprise. The real answer lies in what "we the people" of the United States are going to do differently to stop this madness. Clearly, what we've all collectively done in the past is not nearly enough. If you harbor any doubt about that, just ask young Trayvon.

Cynthia McKinney is a frequent contributor to Global Research.



(NYASATIMES) Malawi devalue Kwacha, insists IMF

COMMENT - More of the same from the IMF, and it's global war against the middle class, and enforcement of corporate exploitation. Devaluing the Malawi Kwacha means stealing the savings and work of the Malawian people, who are the only ones to pay taxes and save. By the way this article from Nyasa Times is very apologetic to the IMF, and it's usual 'human rights concerns' in countries that do not follow their 'policy prescriptions' or sanctions regimes in lockstep, including enforcing sanctions against Zimbabwe. Malawi's human rights are no worse than those in surrounding countries, and a hell of a lot better than in the DRC, where entire regions are run by transnational corporations and the militias and armies they EMPLOY to steal the people's resources - something to keep in mind. Also tellingly, comments have been closed on this article at Nyasa Times. They also neglect to mention the budgetary retaliation against the Malawi government, because of it refusing to take an anti-Zimbabwe stance and extending a loan to the country of Zimbabwe. Read from back in 2009: (NYASATIMES) EU petitioned to suspend aid to Malawi over bankrolling Mugabe. To quote the Brigadier: "“Our argument is that SADC countries have been derelict in their duty to Zimbabwe. Why should countries which support Mugabe’s tyranny receive money from EU taxpayers?". This is the level of vindictiveness and retaliation that is used to enforce the New World Order. By the way, now Member of the European Parliament Brig. Gen. Geoffrey van Orden is a lifelong careerist in British Army Intelligence.

Malawi devalue Kwacha, insists IMF
By Mabvuto Banda, Reuters

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Saturday that Malawi, which has seen donor aid dry up and revenue shrink, should cut spending and reiterated its call for the devaluation of the kwacha currency.

A mission from the fund has been taking stock of the southern African country's public finances, which are in dire straights as Britain and the United States have frozen aid packages worth hundreds of millions of dollars over concerns about the human rights record of President Bingu wa Mutharika.

With the uncertain outlook for government revenues and mounting pressures for wage increases, the mission urges the authorities to begin to identify Lower priority expenditures that could be cut, IMF Mission Chief for Malawi Tsidi Tsikata told reporters.

Government will have to devalue the local currency because the official exchange rate is failing to anchor inflation expectations as a growing share of imports is being priced at the significantly depreciated parallel exchange rate, he added.

The collapse in donor funding, which accounts for 40 percent of the budget,

[In retaliations against the extension of a loan to the Zimbabwean government, which is under international siege. - MrK]

has put pressure on the kwacha, forcing a 10 percent devaluation last year to 166 to the dollar although it remains well shy of a black market rate of close to 300.

Malawi's inflation rate has climbed into double digits with the February inflation pegged at 10.8 percent up from 10.3 percent in January.

Land-locked Malawi is one of the world's poorest countries and its economy is heavily dependent on agriculture, much of it subsistence.

[Subsistence farming is a hell of a lot better than the presence of the giant foreign owned tea plantations, who only accumulate wealth for themselves, which they then ship back to Britain.

- MrK]

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(UKZAMBIANS) Former mines minister arrested for facilitating issuance of the mining license

COMMENT - I would really like to know which corporation bribed the MMD minister, because of they were US or Canadian, they would be criminally liable under the FCPA and the Canadian version of that law.

Former mines minister arrested for facilitating issuance of the mining license
Posted by Editor on March 29, 2012

Former mines minister has been arrested and charged with two counts of corruption and being in possession of property believed to be proceeds of crime. Mr Mwale is alleged to have received about K473 million from a foreign mining company as reward for him to facilitate the issuance of the mining license.

He has also been charged with being in possession of property allegedly believed to have been proceeds of crime. Mr. Mwale is alleged to have brought in 5,000 bicycles suspected to be proceeds of crime valued at about K I.5 billion.

Mr. Mwale who will appear in court on 4th April has since been released on a K50 million police bond with 2 working sureties.

Spokesperson for the Joint Investigative wings Charity Munganga-Chanda has confirmed the development to QFM News.

Parliament passed the 2012 Anti Corruption Commission Bill which has also seen the abuse of authority of office clause reinstated./QFM

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Friday, March 30, 2012

Dialogue over Barotseland is not a choice; it's a must

Dialogue over Barotseland is not a choice; it's a must
By The Post
Fri 30 Mar. 2012, 13:00 CAT

IT was difficult to imagine that things could move and degenerate so fast.Everyone now seems to realise that we have a big problem, a big challenge which requires very good leadership skills to address. The problem that has arisen over the Barotse Agreement 1964 is not a small one, it is a big and complicated one.

When people in a certain part of the country call for self-determination invoking the African Charter on Human and People's Rights Article 20 which states that "all peoples have the right to existence.

They shall have unquestionable and inalienable right to self-determination", we have a challenge, we have a problem. This right to self-determination was affirmed with a purpose of promoting a quick end to colonialism.

Colonialism entailed an oppression and exploitation of one group by an alien group. Such an oppression and exploitation was pursued at two levels: the level of politics and the level of economics.

The alien group had the monopoly of the political power and the economic power, resulting in exploitation, manipulation, suppression and oppression of the original owners of the land. The right to self-determination therefore entailed political liberation and economic liberation.

Such a two-fold liberation implied the right to political independence and the right to economic independence. These two rights formed the backbone of the right to self-determination and were often enshrined in the pursuit of nationalism.

When a country assumed political independence and became self-governing, there was a need for the participation of all the people in the governance of the country. Hence, the citizens of an independent nation had the right to participate in the decision-making process of a country directly or through their representatives.

This called for democratic structures and democratic spirit in the independent nations. In such a democratic climate, the freely expressed will of the peoples was supposed to be a major determinant in the decision-making process.

The right to self-determination has been a subject of controversy all over the continent. This occurs when an independent nation is confronted by separatists, secessionists.

After attaining independence from colonial rule, the sectional groupings in a country, defined along regional or ethnic lines, can assume a nationalistic stance and call for independence and autonomy from the sovereign state.

This right has both external and internal dimensions; and, as we can see in our own case here over the Barotseland issue, has been the subject of some controversy in recent years, as it is increasingly asserted by groups within countries, as distinct from ex-colonies and occupied territories.

But the authentic journey towards the realisation of self-determination as a nation requires the acknowledgement of the centrality of the place of God in such a journey. A human being is, through family, born in a clan, tribe, nation or state.

In the distant past, families grouped themselves into these larger communities to defend themselves and their goods against hostile persons and also to provide better and more abundant food; in other words, to raise their standard of living. The state is, therefore, a community of families.

And just as the family exists to help the members who compose the family, so the state exists to help the families which compose the state. And like in the family, problems and differences will always be there in a state, in a nation requiring dialogue at all times.

Dialogue, listening to others and sharing our own beliefs with others, is not a choice for us. It is a must. Dialogue is an essential path for the promotion of peace and unity among all our people.

And dialogue is rooted in the nature and dignity of human beings because in dialogue, one can compare different points of view and examine disagreements. We are reminded in Galatians 3:28 that "there is neither Jew nor Greek…for you are all one".

Yes, there are differences, there are disagreements - gigantic ones for that matter. But they must be pursued with civility and respect for each other. We have heard the leadership of the Barotse Royal Establishment commit itself to a peaceful approach in the pursuance of their objectives.

We have also heard the Zambian government express its desire to pursue this issue in a peaceful manner. And this calls for talking, for discussions, for negotiations whichever way things go. But it's not possible to have meaningful negotiations among people denouncing each other, calling each other names and all sorts of things.

If you want to talk or negotiate with someone, you have to accept the integrity of the other. If you are not prepared to respect and listen to your opponents in any issue and you are not prepared to compromise, then you are also not prepared to negotiate.

We say this because respect, ability and willingness to listen and concessions are inherent in any serious talks or negotiations. And negotiations only deliver positive results when people are willing to listen and respect each other, when they are concerned and seem to be keen to resolve their differences peacefully or amicably.

Even parting, undesirable as it may be, should be carried out in peace and in a dignified manner. And as we have stated before, negotiated solutions can be found even to conflicts that have come to seem intractable and solutions emerge when those who have been divided reach out to find a common ground.

If you are not prepared to compromise, then you must not enter into or think about the process of negotiating at all. That is the nature of compromising: you can compromise on fundamental issues. Insignificant things, peripheral issues, don't need any compromise at all. But of course, compromise must not undermine your own position.

There is no need for tough talk. Where things have reached, they are high enough for all to see and admit that there is a big problem that needs a different approach. All that tough talking that was there before things got to where they are now should be put aside because this is no time for posturing.

We have a people that have to live together in peace whether they stay in the same country or they go separate ways - they still have to live together in peace. This is a people that has been bound together by destiny and no border that is drawn by anyone can separate them.

But there is a problem between them or among them that needs to be addressed and a solution found without a single soul being lost, without a single limb being lost. Fumes and smoke appear before flames do; insults come before violence.

If you stick something in your eye, tears will flow; and if you hurt a person deeply, you will discover his true feelings. If you throw rocks at birds, you will scare them away; and if you insult a friend, you will break up the friendship.

Whichever way, this problem can be resolved peacefully and it must be resolved peacefully. And we therefore urge both the Barotse Royal Establishment and the political leadership in Lusaka to respect each other and quickly open dialogue.

We say this because whichever way things may go, they can only do so peacefully if there is meaningful dialogue. Mistakes have been made. Who doesn't make mistakes? Who has never made mistakes?

Who has never offended anyone? Let us accept our mistakes and realise truthfully where things stand and move to make amends, to correct that which is wrong. That's the reality of life - it's about making mistakes and correcting them; and the quicker and more thorough, the better.

There is need to pay attention to sentiments. For as long as legitimate bodies of opinion feel stifled, vile minds will take advantage of justifiable grievances to destroy, to kill and to maim.

For as long as some people feel their grievances are being ignored, are being belittled, there will always be tension and conflict. Social and political problems don't just change because you have made a law - it takes a great deal of effort and time.

And whatever initiatives are taken to deal with this difference, with this problem, they have to be underpinned by the uplifting of the most downtrodden sections of our population and all-round transformation of our society. What this is showing us is that our nation is not well organised and managed and it needs to redeem and reconstruct itself. And reconstruction goes hand in hand with reconciliation.

And as we have stated before, the hallmark of great leaders is the ability to understand the context in which they are operating and act accordingly. A leader who relies on authority to solve problems is bound to come to grief. The important thing is to give happiness to people.

It is the dictate of history to bring to the fore the kind of leaders who seize the moment, who cohere the wishes and aspirations of the people. And more often than not, an epoch creates and nurtures the individuals who are associated with his twists and turns.

The problem before us needs no single genius. It calls for the collective wisdom of all our people. Those who are ready to join hands can overcome the greatest challenges. In the situation we are in, our strongest weapon is not an AK47; it is dialogue.

And no meaningful dialogue can take place on the shifting sands of evasions, illusions, lies, half-truths, cheap propaganda and opportunism. A tragedy of unprecedented proportion is unfolding in our country.

The challenge is to move from rhetoric to dialogue, and dialogue at an unprecedented intensity and scale, trusting in the belief that no man is an island, and those dealing with this issue are not men of stone who are unmoved by the noble passions of love, friendship and human compassion.

This conflict, this disagreement threatens not only the gains we have collectively made so far but also our collective future. And we should treat the question of peace and stability in our country as a common challenge for all our people.



Government, Scott fuelling tension - Ngambela

Government, Scott fuelling tension - Ngambela
By Staff Reporters
Fri 30 Mar. 2012, 13:00 CAT

BAROTSELAND'S administrative head Ngambela prime minister Wainyae Sinyinda has accused the government and Vice-President Guy Scott of fuelling tension by calling its resolutions irresponsible and unacceptable. And Sinyinda says he is ready to die or go to jail in defence of his people's expressed desire to separate from Zambia.

Vice-President Guy Scott, however, says the Brotseland Agreement of 1964 was a document drawn to give comfort to the Lozi-speaking people, and not to advocate secession.

Meanwhile, Western Province police commissioner Fanwell Siandenge says no arrests or incidents of violence were recorded during the two-day sitting of the Barotse National Council in Limulunga.

Responding to Vice-President Guy Scott's statement in Parliament on Wednesday that the resolutions by the Barotse National Council (BNC) to break away from Zambia were irresponsible and unacceptable, Sinyinda said it was the government that was being irresponsible.

He said Barotseland had the most democratic system of governance involving all its citizens.

"I can assure you that all the people that attended the meeting werefor this thing we are talking about. In fact, I want to appeal to the Zambian government to be as realistic as possible so that we don't promote tension in the country and I don't want to be among the people promoting tension. I am an adult and I want peace. We are not going to use any other means apart from peaceful means. They are the ones that are irresponsible," Sinyinda said.

"I remember that they called me fake. You can't use such words when you are talking to another territory. I think it's being unfair and I call upon the Zambian government to be selective when it comes to words. Let them not be emotional because we will end up rising tempers of the whole country, which won't be good."

In a statement in Parliament on the situation in Western Province, Vice-President Scott said the resolutions made in Mongu were irresponsible and unacceptable.

He said the government won't abdicate its responsibility as custodians of the interests of its people living in Zambia.

But Sinyinda said the road to freedom was not easy.

"You don't expect in any country where people are fighting for freedom that everybody will agree with you. I have information that the majority of them (Nkoyas) are supportive of this cause. In every struggle, you get some resistance. Nowhere in this world, even Namibia, South Africa, Angola, Zimbabwe and Mozambique when people were fighting for freedom at no time did they have 100 per cent (support) but the majority will prevail over the minority. When I talk about minority, I am not talking about a tribe here, I am talking about majority of people including everybody. I want to emphasise that the majority of our brothers and sisters in Kaoma are supportive, so I can only say it's a struggle and what's good is that the majority is going to prevail," he said.

Asked to categorically state the boundary of Barotseland, Sinyinda said there were people trying to divide Lozis and other tribes.

He said if they wanted to take parts of Botswana, Namibia and Angola, they would have invited people from those countries to attend the BNC.

"We are not claiming any other piece of land; ours is Kaoma, Lukulu, Kalabo, Shangombo, Senanga, Mongu, Sesheke. We are not making any claim of any territory. I want to make that one clear. I know where that propaganda is coming from. They want to divide us so that you people (Southerners) can get annoyed with us," he said.

And reacting to home affairs minister Kennedy Sakeni's assertions that those advocating the independence of Barotseland from Zambia should stop because it was an act of treason, Sinyinda said in an interview at the Litunga's palace in Limulunga on Wednesday that Barotseland was determined.

"I would like to thank the security forces for being so professional. They have been very professional. They handled the meeting very professionally and that is how it should be because we avoided any spilling of blood," he said.

"Regarding what Sakeni said, I would like to appeal to the Zambian government to handle the whole thing in a very sober manner, without threatening anybody. He should remember that we are not the ones at fault."

Sinyinda said the Barotse people had put up a battle over the Zambian government's abuse of the Barotseland Agreement but that at every stage of resistance, they were arrested.

"In 2011 people resisted and they were even killed; 19 people were killed. It is not us who abrogated the 1964 agreement, it is the Zambian government," Sinyinda said.

"The people of Barotseland have met to make resolutions. The people of Barotseland have met from all the seven districts and because of that the Kuta BRE, particularly the Ngambela, I am ready to defend the position of the people even if it means going to jail."

He further vowed that he would defend what the people of Barotseland had aspired for even to the point of being killed.

Sinyinda reminded the government that threats of treason cannot and have never worked over the Barotseland issue.

"People are alive to the fact that their children, brothers and sisters were killed on 19th January, 2011, barely a year later they have arrived at the position which they have directed that the BRE must follow," Sinyinda said.

He said the advocates for Barotseland's self-determination were fully aware of the strength of the Zambian security forces but that they were just exercising their human rights.

"The Zambian government must own up for the mistakes committed against the people of Barotseland for the past 47 years," he said.

"Under normal circumstances, the people that have committed crimes against humanity must be indicted to the International Court of Justice, instead they continue to threaten the innocent because they have the backing of the security forces, which they want to misuse against our people."

Sinyinda reminded Sakeni that if might was right, South Africa would not have managed to shake itself from the brutal apartheid system and Southern Rhodesia's Ian Smith's statement that there would be no black rule in Zimbabwe for a thousand years would have been realised.

"South Africa had even reached a stage of having nuclear weapons but they never succeeded in suppressing what the people wanted, but we are determined," Sinyinda said with a tinge of emotion.

"Ian Smith where is he? We are determined even if the Zambian government continues to kill a number of us. We are determined to ensure that what belongs to us must be given to us."

He said henceforth, any statement from the government would be rebutted and that no more will the BRE be quiet against malicious and demeaning statements.

"I will be answering back even if I am in prison because I have been given the mandate of the people of Barotseland," he said.

"We believe in peace. We have always been standing for peace and my prayer is that the government must not take advantage of us."

And Siandenge told journalists in Mongu on Wednesday that although there were celebrations in certain areas after the Barotse National Council read out its final resolution, the delegates went back to their homes peacefully.

"The current situation is very normal," Siandenge said. "You can't even know that there was a BNC meeting. It hasn't changed the mood .The people that went for the BNC, their conduct was exemplary."

He said after the final resolutions, the state security profile expected a lot of commotion but that things proceeded smoothly.

"It was like people coming from a football match," Siandenge said."The same spirit should continue. People shouldn't be excited over anything because there is nothing that has changed at the moment."

Close to 2,000 delegates attended the BNC meeting in Limulunga held on March 26 and 27, 2012 at St Lawrence Catholic Church grounds where it was resolved that Barotseland should secede from Zambia following the nullification of the Barotseland Agreement.

Three foreign missions in Zambia, among them the US and Angolan embassies, were represented at the convocation.

And in an interview during BBC's Africa Network yesterday morning, Sinyinda said the move made by Western Province to break-away from the rest of the country does not amount to treason because it is provided for under International Law.

Sinyinda said the Barotse Agreement signed between the Northern Rhodesia and Barotseland in 1964, gave right to either party to revert to its original state if the other party abrogated it's terms.

"We know that under International Law, it cannot be treason because weentered into a treaty and if one of the parties that are involved inan agreement violates that agreement, it means the party has got aright to revert to the original status," Sinyinda said.

When further asked if he knew he was breaking the law by calling on the people of Western Province to secede, Sinyinda said: "I am not calling on my people to secede. It is the people that have actually mandated me to implement their resolutions."

The following is the verbatim report of Vice-President Scott's address to Parliament on Wednesday and the debate by members of parliament that accompanied it:

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, I rise to address the nation through this August House on the resolutions of the 2012 Barotse National Council held at Limulunga from 26th to 27th March, 2012, that were announced in Mongu on matters which have a profound bearing on the integrity and harmony of our peaceful country. Those resolutions have severe consequences and ramifications.

Sir, as a country made of several ethnic groups, we are fused and have established strong bonds of fraternity and a unique fellowship built on a
foundation of "One Zambia One Nation" ever since the attainment of independence.

This has sustained us making our country an oasis of peace, stability and harmony. In diversity, we have held together, without free occupation and obsession with regard to colour, creed or language.

People who visit our country are touched and impressed to see a place where people have endless smiles and extend a hand of friendship to foreigners.

This is a country where there is no xenophobia or ingrained ill feelings towards those who are not our clan, colour or religious persuasion, and I can particularly testify to that.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, we have various challenges, as a country, principally a large number of our people living in poverty. This is morally unacceptable and undesirable.

Our agenda and thrust, in unison, should be to address this challenge. Our policy as the Patriotic Front (PF) government is for devolution as an approach to decentralisation driven by poverty reduction and elimination and is anchored on the issue of getting development to the grassroots across the country as the most effective way of tackling the poverty that we are in.

This was stressed by His Excellency the President in the official opening speech to this august House.

Mr Speaker, in the 2013 Budget, the government will start the process ofrevenue sharing with the local authorities and it will be significant revenue sharing in order to enhance development in all the parts of the country.

In addition, the government has many programmes and projects, some of which will take off in the next two to three months, which will have a big impact, especially in terms of reducing unemployment.

The route we will take, for instance, to construct roads in all our towns in both urban and rural areas will be labour intensive while maintaining quality, sustainability and durability.

Sir, let me now address the grave issue of secession of the Western Province from Zambia. These resolutions have been taken by a group of people who arrogated to themselves an exclusive preserve to speak for all the people of the Western Province.

The resolutions from the districts were a stage-managed and orchestrated affair, with no proof of adequate consultation. We insist, as a government, that the resolutions by the Barotse National Council to break away from the rest of Zambia would have to be considered by all the people of Zambia through a process that involves elaborate and credible consultation.

The resolutions announced in Mongu, yesterday, are irresponsible and unacceptable. The government will not abdicate its responsibility as custodian of the interest of all our people who live in the territorial space called Zambia.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Up to now, the government security and law enforcement wings have maintained a low profile and visibility. Level headedness and circumspection will continue to be our guideline.

Mr Speaker, as a government, we will rise to the challenge of protecting the lives of people and property. It is our inescapable duty, obligation and responsibility to do so. I want to counsel our people to desist from pointing fingers at each other. We must all guard against explosive statements which can only compound the situation.

Sir, various edifices and structures ranging from schools, hospitals and related facilities to offices in the Western Province have been provided, courtesy of Zambian tax payers, of all persuasions, tribes, races and creeds. The government will protect all the properties.

The Western Province is inhibited by a number of ethnic groupings who may be as numerous as the Lozis and who are averse to breaking away from Zambia. Most likely more Lozis live in the rest of Zambia than those who live in the Western Province. They have families and a chain of properties.

They have fused with fellow Zambians through marriages and other forms of social interaction. Generally, all of us Zambians, wherever we may live in our large country, have an ultimate attachment to each other and our country. Any separation entails anguish and rupture in our sentimental connections. It would be a big emotional upheaval.

My advice to the country, Mr Speaker, is that we stay calm and take note of the pronouncements in Mongu and continue to dialogue with the Barotse Royal Establishment. Zambia's harmony will continue to be premised on democratic principles and values and benchmarks of tolerance, accommodation and fellowship.

Finally, it is my hope that the House will unite in safeguarding our peace, unity and the integrity of our country through our purposeful togetherness and response conduct.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

National Assembly Speaker Dr Patrick Matibini: Hon members are now free to ask questions on points of clarification on the statement issued by His Honour the Vice-President.

Michael Kaingu (Mwandi MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, is the Vice-President aware that the Barotse Agreement is a document that unites the two territories and in its absence, there is no relationship?

Dr Scott: Mr Speaker that is the legal situation taken to extremes and twisted. In practice, the Western Province has been part of Zambia and has been governed as part of Zambia since well before 1964.

I have friends who came out here in the colonial times to be colonial officers and they moved into the Western Province and the other provinces without any distinction as to where they were. In practice, the Western Province or the so-called Barotseland has been part of Zambia for a very long time or over 100 years.

I thank you, Sir.

Jack Mwiimbu (Monze UPND member of parliament): Mr Speaker, arising from the ministerial statement given by His Honour the Vice-President in which he has indicated that the Western Province was part of Zambia prior to 1964, what is the genesis of the 1964 Barotse Agreement?

Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I think the intimate connection that exists in some people's minds between the Barotseland Agreement on the one hand and the possibilities of secession on the other is misconceived.

The Barotseland Agreement was a document drawn up to give comfort to the Barotse Royal Establishment that it would not be disadvantaged by being a part of Zambia having gone from being a protectorate within a protectorate. It has nothing to do with this secession resolutions that have been made in Mongu this week.

I thank you, Sir.

Gabriel Namulambe (Mpongwe MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, issues like the resolutions that have been passed by the Barotse National Council can cause conflicts in the nation.

Has the Government taken steps to investigate the real matters that have exhumed the issue of the Barotseland Agreement?

Vice-President: Mr Speaker, yes, we are taking steps to examine both the immediate and deep causes of this set of resolutions.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Eustakio Kazonga (Vubwi MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, in his ministerial statement, His Honour the Vice- President referred to decentralisation by devolution as one of the ways in which the PF government plans to reduce poverty.

I would like to know what else the government plans to do for the people of Zambia in general and the Western Province, in particular, to reduce the level of poverty.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, we are getting too off track for me to give a convincing answer. I can talk on that subject for an hour, but it is not relevant to the immediate issue that this statement was about.
I thank you, Sir.

Greyford Monde (Itezhi-tezhi UPND member of parliament): Mr Speaker, in 1991, when Dr Kaunda realised that he had not done well as regards the welfare of the people of the Western Province, he campaigned on the line of restoring the Barotseland Agreement. Unfortunately, he could not win that election.

In 2011, last year, the PF mentioned that it would restore the Barotse Agreement. Could His Honour the Vice-President explain to the House what the PF was going to restore and what it meant when it said that it would restore the Barotseland Agreement?

Sports minister Chishimba Kambwili: Mukapange chalo chenu (Create your own country).

Speaker Matibini: Order! Let us have order.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, senior members of the PF, as I recall, were never so careless as to say they would restore the Barotseland Agreement.

I remember several campaign speeches that I and His Excellency the President made, for example, where we discussed the concept of decentralisation and heavier involvement of traditional rulers and traditional establishments in the management of the country and we used a sound analogy for this principle of indirect rule.

In the Eastern Province, when a translator is translating what I am talking about into Ngoni, he says indirectly rule because the concept is known. In the Western Province, the Barotseland Agreement or the royal establishment's powers as guaranteed by that were used as examples. So, the literal promise was never made and the promise was for decentralisation and that will be kept.

I thank you, Sir.

Charles Kakoma (Zambezi West UPND member of parliament): Mr Speaker, in my layman understanding, Barotseland came together with the Northern Rhodesia to form one unitary State called Zambia.

Along the way, that agreement was abrogated by the United National Independence Party (UNIP) government.

Therefore, that agreement fell apart. What would be the meaning of restoring it? Would that mean that we will unite the two nations into one unitary State of Zambia or restoring it means that there will be secession?

Vice-President Scott: As I said earlier, my layman understanding also is that the Barotseland Agreement was put in place to give comfort and reassurance to the Lozi people and the Barotse Royal Establishment, in particular, that they would not be disadvantaged by the coming fusion with the rest of Zambia.

So, I do not think it is the Barotseland Agreement that makes the Western Province part of Zambia. The Western Province is the Western Province of Zambia.

I thank you, Sir.

Kapembwa Simbao (Senga Hill MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, every community has a right of association. If they want to associate, they make that decision. The Lozis have decided not to associate with the rest of
Zambia. Suppose they stand their ground, what will the government do about it?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, I would take issue with the statement that the Lozis have decided not to associate with the rest of Zambia. Some individuals,

in the Western Province, politicians, in fact, of the Movement for
Restoration of Barotseland in particular who signed those resolutions, have engineered that these resolutions be produced.

I made it very clear in the statement that there is no evidence whatsoever of adequate consultation of some sort of referendum or anything having taken place even among the Lozi tribe let alone the Western Province and Zambia as a whole.

As regards the question of freedom of association, tell that to the people of Western Sahara, Biafra, South Sudan, Eritrea and so on and so forth. This is very dangerous territory, Mr Simbao. It really is. I think we should steer clear of it and be unified as one nation in this House.

Levy Ngoma (Sinda MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, can the Vice-President be very categorical on whether the PF government will restore the Barotseland Agreement.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, the report that contains, as one of its recommendations, the restoration of the Barotseland Agreement is currently under consideration by Cabinet and there is no categorical answer until
Cabinet has decided.

Government members: Boma!

Vice-President Scott: The issue of secession is not restoration or failure to restore the Barotseland Agreement. Secession is a much more serious business and one which should not be connected because logically, it is not connected to the Barotseland Agreement.

I thank you, Sir.

Request Muntanga (Kalomo UPND member of parliament): Mr Speaker, His Honour the Vice-President has said that the Barotseland Agreement was basically meant to provide comfort to the Barotse Royal Establishment. The Republican President said he would find it difficult to restore the Barotseland Agreement. What is so difficult in the Barotseland Agreement?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, the topic is the passage of various unconstitutional resolutions by a group of secessionists in Western Province. That is what we are making a Statement about. The Barotseland Agreement and what our President thinks about it, personally, and what remarks he might have made off-the-cuff and so forth, I cannot expand on.

It is under the active consideration of this Government. The House will be advised in due course.

I thank you, Sir.

Stephen Kampyongo (Shiwang'andu PF member of parliament): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out whether the government is considering engaging people's representatives from Western Province, especially the honourable members of parliament who were in this House before, and those who were in Cabinet and are in this House today, to find out what role they played then and now, to guide our people of Western Province.

This is because they cannot be here comfortably debating with us whilst people there are making different decisions.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, let me be very clear that the questioner wants to know whether we are considering engaging hon. Members of Parliament andothers. We will engage with anyone who is serious and has good intentions.
We have an open-door policy.

The mere fact that this council was allowed to take place peacefully without any interruptions for two days, is evidence of our attitude towards freedom of speech, freedom of expression and freedom of association. There were other Governments in the not-so-distant past who could have stopped that council very quickly. In fact, it would never have been able to convene.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Vice-President Scott: So, we are prepared to talk to anybody and engage them. I implore honourable Members of Parliament, especially those from Western Province who see this as an opportunity to embarrass the Government, to desist from doing so. It is a very serious matter and we should take a constructive and humble attitude towards it.

Mwendaweli Imenda (Luena ADD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, the Vice-President says that he only has a layman's understanding of the issues. May I know from his layman's understanding what happens if a marriage certificate is torn by one of the parties. Can he tell me the meaning of that?

Speaker Matibini: Hon Members, let us maintain calm. I know that this is a very emotive and sensitive issue, but we must remain calm. We should deliberate with utmost calm.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, from a layman's perspective, the tearing up of a marriage certificate merely results in the necessity to obtain a duplicate.

Government members: Hear, hear! Boma!

Vice-President Scott: Sir, to actually obtain a divorce requires decree nisi, decree absolute and all those fancy things that lawyers know about. If I was making a public statement about marriage and divorce, I would answer at greater length, but I am not prepared.

I thank you, Sir.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Allan Mbewe (Chadiza MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, my question has been overtaken.

Mr Mutelo (Lukulu West): Mr Speaker, in 1964, Western Province had the highest number of the educated ones in Zambia, if my statistics are correct.
Hon. Government Members: Aah!


Misheck Mutelo (Lukulu West MMD member of parliament): Today, Western Province is the poorest in Zambia. Could this be the reason they would be arriving at such resolutions?


Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, we have, on this side of the House, …

Speaker Matibini: Order!

Vice-President Scott: … considerable sympathy with the sufferings of the people in Western Province.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Vice-President Scott: We are not blind to that. We also have considerable sympathy with the other nine provinces that also suffer from poverty and all kinds of unpleasant things.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Vice-President Scott: If one wanted to know why Western Province is coming out as the poorest, on the basis of the statistics, I suggest that the questioner or anybody else who is curious to know asks the previous Government, …
Government members: Hear, hear!

Vice-President Scott: … which spent 20 years struggling or pretended to be struggling with various issues, such as animal disease, that were a curseto Western Province.

I thank you, Sir.

Lucky Mulusa (Solwezi Central MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, thecurrent grouping that has come up with the decision that we secedeconsists of seven districts. Now, Barotseland included Southern Province,Western Province, parts of Lusaka Province, the Copperbelt and North Western Province …
Government members: Awe! (no!)


Mulusa: Hon Members, I am actually right. May I know from …
Speaker Matibini: Order!

Hon Members, we will not progress smoothly and efficiently if we constantly interject. This is a serious issue and we must demonstrate the seriousness by maintaining discipline. The discipline should be manifested by hon. Members of the House. This business is not limited to theprecincts of the National Assembly. It goes beyond.

So, we need to reflect the discipline of the House and let each hon. Member debate and give His Honour the Vice-President an opportunity to respond. There is no point in proceeding with the debate if we cannot conduct ourselves in a disciplined manner. There is really no point.

Namulambe: Send Kambwili out!

Speaker Matibini: May the honourable member for Solwezi Central continue.
Mulusa: Mr Speaker, if they will have an engagement with this grouping, would they also include us, who are legally and technically part of Barotseland so that we do not start another secession discussion after agreeing with only seven districts?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, if there is going to be a dialogue that is serious, one can include much, but one cannot, from this recent batch of resolutions passesd yesterday, be very clear what is meant by Barotseland.

Sir, the questioner said that seven districts were represented. I think one has dissociated itself and it is dubious how any of them is actually representative of the people in that district. It is open to question.

The honourable member of parliament, when he says, "Include us', presumably means the honourable members of parliament. My response is that honourable members of parliament always have an open door in this Government and with this State House. They have never had anything else under the PF dispensation.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Christopher Kalila (Lukulu East MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to add my voice on this very important issue.

Mr Speaker, one of the reasons cited for secession by our people in
Western Province is the abrogation of the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 by successive Governments which therefore, means that to avoid secession is to restore the Barotseland Agreement. Why then are you not considering this path to avoid all this?

Speaker Matibini: Order! Before His Honour the Vice-President responds, please, bear in mind that earlier on, he said that the Government hasreceived a report.

They are studying it and there is a recommendation to that effect. Cabinet will deliberate and the position will be taken. You are free to ask questions of all sorts but certainly not repetition.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, I am absorbed from having to give it to myself.

I thank you, Sir.

Harry Kalaba (Bahati PF member of parliament): Mr Speaker, arising fromthat very unifying statement that His Honour the Vice-President has givento this House, what is the position of the three major opposition political parties such as the United Party for National Development (UPND), the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) as well as United Liberal Party (ULP)? In today's paper, the leaders of these opposition parties have been quoted as declining to comment on this issue.

Are the three leaders helping Government in looking at this issue from a positiveperspective?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, it is PF that is in the whole seat because we are in Government. It is up to us to do a good job or to make mistakes in theprocess. If the other parties want to watch the final games, that is their prerogative.

We have not consulted. I think it would be actually at some point, we may not do this in future. A good idea is that if all the main parties, the ones at least in Western Province which I think are about four where to say yes, we are on the same page and we are standing on the same ground.

We are playing with fire here and we do not want anything to happen to our country that comes and cannot be got rid of in decades.

I thank you, Sir.

Chinga Miyutu (Kalabo Central member of parliament): Mr Speaker, sometime back I said in this House that once beaten twice shine and there was laughter in this House.


Miyutu: Mr Speaker, we do not see fire when it just starts. We only see fire sticks. We have a government in place and it received a report of the Barotseland Commission of Inquiry about four weeks ago but nothing has been done. The difference makes what it is.


Speaker Matibini: I hope you will now proceed to the question.

Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I would like to urge the House that a question behaves like a house because it has a cornerstone.

Now that the Cabinet or the Government has not yet come up with the answer to the resolutions of the Barotseland Commission of Inquiry and now that there is a resolution from Western Province, what immediate action has the Government put in place for the current situation?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, the immediate action includes monitoring and analysing but in terms of more proactive things or more active things than those, I do not think the House could reasonably expect me to preannounce any actions that may be coming to contain the situation.

I am not saying they are coming and not coming at the same time. That is a prerogative of Government to allow various arms of Government to do their job.
I thank you, Sir.

Patrick Mucheleka (Lubasenshi Independent member of parliament): Mr Speaker, given that in Western Province, there is no consensus with regards to the succession that is being claimed and given that some ethnic groupings such as the Nkoyas in Kaoma District have seriously and consistently disassociated themselves from the secession that is being talked about, will the Government, perhaps even as they study the report consider providing a mechanism for carrying out a referendum for the people in Western Province so that they can indicate in terms of whether or not they would like to secede?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, if we were minded that way, we would be minded to have a referendum of the whole of Zambia and that is a constitutional issue.

If you break a country into half, you are effectively changing the constitution of the very fundamental level. I take the point about various ethnic groups having different views in Western Province but I am not even sure what the majority those are.

How do we know? Are we to take the movement for the restoration of Barotseland as being the yardstick of Lozi political fight? We do not know. That is why I made the point very forcibly in the statement that the process of consultation that had gone on behind these resolutions is not clear at all.

I thank you, Sir.

Moses Chishimba (Kanfinsa PF member of parliament): Mr Speaker, would it be far-fetched to think that this agenda is being driven by people who either have failed to achieve political power through normal means…

Government members: Hear, hear!

Chishimba:…and are working behind the remote control and were part of the fallen MMD Government? May the Vice-President clarify that.

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, that is feeling in the dark. We have police forces and other investigative wings who will in due course can may be come to some conclusion but otherwise, it is simply speculation.

I thank you, Sir.


Mtolo Phiri (Chipata Central MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, would the Vice-President indicate what immediate measures the government is putting in place so that current investors and would be investors are not scared because of this impasse?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, first of all, there is no impasse. There is a bunch of resolutions from some sort of organisation that maybe has legitimacy but not necessarily representativity. Even if there were, we would be explaining it.

In fact, we are explaining it to our co-operating partners, diplomatic members and to the investors themselves. I have had several phone calls about what is going on and I have reassured the people calling that everything is well.
I thank you, Sir.

Dr Situmbeko Musokotwane (Liuwa MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, …


Speaker Matibini: Order!

Dr Musokotwane: … His Excellency the President made an off-the-cuff remark on the date of receiving the commission of inquiry report to the extent that he would not honour the Barotseland Agreement. Right now, Sir, in the press, there is a report coming out of Botswana that the Government is being urged there to ask for an apology because of some of off-the-cuff remarks made by the President while he was in Botswana. One of which was that Botswana only had five shops …

MMD Members: Aah!

Dr Musokotwane: … and therefore, there it did not need people in the field of accountancy.


Dr Musokotwane: Would you agree that for the sake of the security and honour of our country, the President must be dissuaded very strongly from making off-the-cuff remarks because they are embarrassing this country?

Opposition members: Hear, hear!

Mbewe: Zoona!

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, I think we are well off the track now. In general, the President's off-the-cuff remarks have nothing to do with this debate whatsoever.

Government members: Hear, hear!

Vice-President Scott: I must say that I am also having problems stopping some of my officers from making off-the-cuff remarks. In English, they say, "You cannot teach an old dog new tricks."


Vice-President Scott: So, may be Michael …

Opposition members: Oh, oh!


Mr Speaker: Order! Order!

Vice-President Scott: Maybe that is what I am also suffering from anyway.

I thank you, Sir.


Opposition members: Hear, hear! The VP!

Moses Muteteka (Chisamba MMD member of parliament): Mr Speaker, the matter which is on the Floor of the House has attracted a lot of political expressions. Taking into account the resolutions which have just been made by the Barotseland National Council, …


Muteteka: … is the Government willing to accommodate all the chiefs in Zambia if they asked for a conference to deliberate on this issue taking into account the fact that the matter affects a number of chiefs in Zambia who have not spoken to about it?

What will be your position as PF, if all the chiefs asked for a conference so that they can be allowed to deliberate on this issue in the interest of making peace?

Vice-President Scott: Mr Speaker, I think the only undertaking I could give at this point is that we will cross that bridge when we get to it. I cannot answer a question like that on the Floor without consultation.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

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Mushala awaits official complaints from Kansanshi laid off miners

Mushala awaits official complaints from Kansanshi laid off miners
By Moses Kuwema
Fri 30 Mar. 2012, 12:57 CAT

BERT Mushala says he has only received one complaint of a miner who has been laid off for taking part in the strike action early this month at Kansanshi Mining Plc in Solwezi.

Commenting on complaints of witch-hunt by some miners following the strike action that paralysed operations and resulted in a $25 million loss, Mushala said he was still waiting for other miners that were laid off to approach him.

"I have heard of that complaint laying off and I have only seen one letter which indicated that the gentleman had been laid off for participating in the strike action. However, I did request to get the full detailed information of how many have been laid off because of the outcome of the strike action. So we are waiting for those that are affected to approach our office. As soon as we know those that are affected, we will engage Kansanshi Mining Plc and so far they also understand and I trust and believe that they will understand so that we can reach an amicable solution," Mushala, who is permanent secretary of the province, said.

Mushala further advised the affected miners to also make their complaints known to the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and Labour through the labour officer.

"When they raise these complaints with our labour officer, the labour officer will immediately come and inform us. We are all government. We will see how we can resolve the issue amicably, looking at the pros and cons of the scenario and what caused it, before we even interact with both the union and the management of the mine," he said.

Kansanshi miners recently revealed that their management had allegedly prepared close to 100 letters on charges related to the strike action for employees in the processing, engineering, information technology as well as production sections.

According to the letters sent to affected miners by human resource manager Linda Mambwe, Kansanshi laid off some employees pending disciplinary hearing on charges related to the strike action blamed on delayed negotiations for the 2012 Collective Agreement which has since been referred to the Industrial Relations Court.

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Mushala awaits official complaints from Kansanshi laid off

Mushala awaits official complaints from Kansanshi laid off miners By Moses Kuwema Fri 30 Mar. 2012, 12:57 CAT BERT Mushala says he has only received one complaint of a miner who has been laid off for taking part in the strike action early this month at Kansanshi Mining Plc in Solwezi. Commenting on complaints of witch-hunt by some miners following the strike action that paralysed operations and resulted in a $25 million loss, Mushala said he was still waiting for other miners that were laid off to approach him. "I have heard of that complaint laying off and I have only seen one letter which indicated that the gentleman had been laid off for participating in the strike action. However, I did request to get the full detailed information of how many have been laid off because of the outcome of the strike action. So we are waiting for those that are affected to approach our office. As soon as we know those that are affected, we will engage Kansanshi Mining Plc and so far they also understand and I trust and believe that they will understand so that we can reach an amicable solution," Mushala, who is permanent secretary of the province, said. Mushala further advised the affected miners to also make their complaints known to the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and Labour through the labour officer. "When they raise these complaints with our labour officer, the labour officer will immediately come and inform us. We are all government. We will see how we can resolve the issue amicably, looking at the pros and cons of the scenario and what caused it, before we even interact with both the union and the management of the mine," he said. Kansanshi miners recently revealed that their management had allegedly prepared close to 100 letters on charges related to the strike action for employees in the processing, engineering, information technology as well as production sections. According to the letters sent to affected miners by human resource manager Linda Mambwe, Kansanshi laid off some employees pending disciplinary hearing on charges related to the strike action blamed on delayed negotiations for the 2012 Collective Agreement which has since been referred to the Industrial Relations Court.


(HERALD) ‘Copac yet to produce draft Constitution’

‘Copac yet to produce draft Constitution’
Friday, 30 March 2012 00:00
Tendai Mugabe Senior Reporter

COPAC has not yet produced a draft to the new Constitution as the document produced does not qualify for that status, Secretary for Media, Information and Publicity Mr George Charamba has said.

Addressing the Joint Command and Staff Course Number 25 on the role of the media and information in promoting nation-building and economic development at the Zimbabwe Staff College in Harare yesterday, Mr Charamba described the Copac document as an ‘‘attempted draft’’.

He said Copac should come up with a consensual document that will be submitted to the management committee.

The management committee is made up of negotiators to the inter-party dialogue that gave birth to the Global Political Agreement and the inclusive Government.

After interrogating the document, Mr Charamba said, the management committee would in turn submit it to the principals. The document will, on reaching the principals, assume the status of the draft constitution.

“What we have are mere drafts of drafts, way away from a draft for the management committee, let alone for principals,” he said.

“We do not have a draft Constitution. Copac has its own motions going on and they do not have a document they can have consensus on. They have certain issues they are referring to the management committee, which is the second level.

“Because Copac does not have a consensual document to forward to the Management Committee, what they have cannot be given the status of a draft Constitution.”

Mr Charamba said some clauses in the “so-called” draft Constitution were questionable.

The clauses, he said, sought to relegate Zimbabwe from its sovereign status to a non-State governed by foreign laws.

“If one were to go by the draft, one would get a sense of a country about to retreat from a nation, doing so in two contradictory ways.

“Centrifugally by anticipating secession presently couched as devolution. Call it a retreat to narrow forms of political and social foci. Globally by turning itself into a non-State governed by international law players.”

He said the media should critique the draft Constitution rather than focusing on peripheral issues.

Mr Charamba said a proper Constitution should not try to settle political scores, but should be timeless.

He said devolution being pushed for in the draft Constitution was impossible in a unitary State like Zimbabwe.

On freedom of expression, Mr Charamba said media organisations needed to be regulated as they have the capacity to injure freedom of expression.

“Media organisations can indeed undermine freedom of expression, which is why their protection under any Constitution must be conditional.

“Our drafters appear to be missing this most elementary point. What should be unconditionally protected is freedom of expression as a human right but never as an organisational right.”

Transmedia chairman Dr Paul Chimedza said they had intensified efforts to ensure radio and television transmission signals reached all parts of Zimbabwe.

He said traditionally marginalised border towns such as Plumtree and Beitbridge were connected to radio signals last year.

“We have now realised the importance for every Zimbabwean to receive radio and television transmission signals.

“We have done that in Plumtree, Beitbridge and Victoria Falls,” he said.

He said Transmedia was preparing for community radio stations across Zimbabwe.

“We realised that lack of transmission creates a vacuum and that vacuum will be filled by pirate stations which are hostile to the country.

“People will end up listening to pirate radio stations, not because they love them but because there will be no option,” said Dr Chimedza.

He said although they received substantial funding from the Government, they had devised other ways of making money.

Herald deputy editor Caesar Zvayi and Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation general manager (programming) Allan Chiweshe were also part of the Joint Command and Staff Course Number 25.

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(HERALD) New industrial, trade policies launched

New industrial, trade policies launched
Friday, 30 March 2012 00:00
Sydney Kawadza Assistant News Editor

THE European Union should engage Zimbabwe in good faith for the total and unconditional removal of illegal sanctions, President Mugabe has said. This would enable Zimbabwe achieve its aspirations in sustainable, balanced and equitable economic growth and development.

Officially launching the Industrial Development and National Trade policies in Harare yesterday, the President said sanctions undermined Zimbabwe’s full participation in world trade. “As a full-fledged member of the World Trade Organisation, the time may have come for the Zimbabwe Government, supported by Sadc and Comesa regions, to formally raise legal concerns over the hindrance posed by these sanctions to the free trade principles espoused by the WTO,” he said.

The Industrial Development Policy (2012-2016) seeks to transform Zimbabwe from a producer of primary goods to a producer of value-added goods for domestic and export markets.

It will also promote viable industrial and commercial sectors as well as domestic and international trade for a vibrant, self-sustaining and competitive economy.

The policy seeks to restore the manufacturing sector’s GDP contribution from 15 percent to 30 percent, exports from 26 percent to 50 percent by 2015 consistent with the Medium Term Plan.

It targets an average real GDP growth of 7 percent.

The policy looks at creating additional employment in the manufacturing sector, increase capacity utilisation from 57 percent to 80 percent, re-quip and replace obsolete machinery, new technologies for import substitution while enhancing value addition, among other objectives.

The National Trade Policy has a vision to have trade function as the engine for sustainable economic growth while facilitating the productive sectors towards export-orientation and international competitiveness.

It seeks to ensure Zimbabwean firms and households enjoy continued access to a wide range of high-quality goods and services.

The policy seeks to increase exports, promote the diversification of Zimbabwe’s export basket and increase export earnings by at least 10 percent annually from US$4,3 billion in 2011 to US$7 billion in 2016.

It will promote and enhance value addition of primary commodities and restore the manufacturing sector’s contribution to export earnings from 16 percent to 50 percent by 2016.

The policy is intended to consolidate and expand existing export markets and explore new markets while expanding into regional markets for deeper regional integration.

It will enhance trade facilitation to expedite trade flows by reducing and eliminating barriers and give guidance on trade policy instruments such as tariffs, non-tariff measures and trade defence mechanisms to promote trade, protect industry from unfair trade practices while improving access to goods and services.

President Mugabe said the policies came at the right time with the economy showing signs of recovery due to bold measures Government is pursuing.

The measures include the Medium Term Plan which establishes national priorities necessary for Zimbabwe’s development.

Cde Mugabe said the policies are instruments for attaining goals, objectives and targets set out in the Medium Term Plan.

“Zimbabwe is renowned for its abundant natural resources which nearly always have been exported in their raw form.

“By making provision for processing and beneficiation of raw products, the Industrial Development Policy addresses the erosion of capacity utilisation in industry which had substantially declined to below 10 percent.”

The President said the policy will reverse the trend which saw imports rise to 66 percent against 34 percent in exports between 2009 and 2010.

He said the policy should proffer solutions to address the increased vagaries of weather patterns and contribute towards development of drought-tolerant crop varieties while enhancing water utilisation.

President Mugabe said the National Trade Policy will ensure Zimbabwe’s full participation in the global market while harmonising a number of trade-related laws and regulations.

“The new policy document therefore seeks to leverage the revised Industrial Development Policy and provide guidance on future negotiations for any agreements between the country and her trading partners . . . ”

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai called for the full implementation of such policies.

“We should move from a culture of crafting papers that are not implemented.”

He said Zimbabwe had the potential to attract investors because of its vast mineral resources.

“I had an opportunity to attend investor conferences in South Africa and England and there is massive interest investing in Africa in general and Zimbabwe in particular.

“Notwithstanding the political differences there is interest from investors in Africa with Zimbabwe being the main target,” he said.

PM Tsvangirai also called for an inclusive approach from all sectors for the success of the policies.

The launch was attended by Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, Cabinet ministers, senior Government officials, captains of industry and commerce and diplomats.

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(HERALD) Editorial Comment: MDC-T councillors a disgrace to voters, society

Editorial Comment: MDC-T councillors a disgrace to voters, society
Friday, 30 March 2012 00:00

Demonstrations rocked the small town of Karoi in Mashonaland West province on Wednesday as residents protested against what they alleged to be corruption by councillors and council officials, poor service delivery and abuse of council money. The Karoi demonstrations were hardly surprising given the allegations being levelled against the Karoi Town Council.

If the council takes a decision to allocate plots and commercial stands to councillors for prices as low as US$12, then they are inviting the wrath of the residents.

We don’t dispute the fact that councillors offer services to the people for little remuneration and towards the end of their terms can be considered for stands to build their houses or go into business. But they must expect to pay reasonable purchase fees for those stands. Anything less than US$100 is ridiculous, let alone the US$12 dollars they are reported to have paid.

It does not matter that procedures were followed to get approvals for such purchases, the fees are just not acceptable. Most of these councillors have not offered many years of service to expect to enjoy such discounts.

This all happens when the same council is failing to pay its workers salaries on time.

The story of corruption and poor service delivery has become too familiar in Zimbabwe’s urban councils where councillors and officers misuse council resources with shocking impunity. Hardly any town council has been spared from allegations of wanton corruption. Perhaps only the Bulawayo City Council has been able to keep itself untainted.

Bindura, Mutare, Rusape, Redcliff, Chitungwiza, the list is endless — have all been haunted by allegations of financial impropriety.

MDC-T which is running these councils has every reason to be worried by the lack of corporate governance that its councillors have shown. The party’s president, Mr Morgan Tsvangirai has spoken out against the behaviour of the officials but has not taken any drastic action to end the shameful behaviour of the councillors.

What we have seen instead are running battles between Local Government, Rural and Urban Development Minister Ignatius Chombo and the councils, and MDC-T has reacted by alleging that the minister is interfering too much in the running of councils.
But the question is should he just watch when ratepayers’ money is being abused without any attempt to offer proper services. None of the councils, with perhaps the exception of Bulawayo, has been able to offer acceptable services in return for the money paid by residents.

Gradually a theory is emerging that the failure in local governance by MDC-T councils could be symptomatic of a bigger problem in how the party selects leaders for public office, a weakness that could be replicated in Government should they win elections to form a Government on their own.

This is not to suggest that Zanu-PF has fared any better in dealing with corruption within its own ranks. But the MDC-T has been campaigning on a ticket of change and the stint it has had in local government and to some extent in Government, weakens their claim to be a party capable of operating at higher levels of integrity and transparency.

If anything the experience of the inclusive Government has revealed a common weakness across party lines to abuse resources meant for the people. The recent revelations around the Constituency Development Fund are a case in point.

Whilst the councils are beginning to generate reasonable amounts from ratepayers, they will not be able to offer any meaningful services if they are spending this money on themselves.

This is the accusation that is now being levelled against the resuscitation team led by Fungai Mbetsa, which is seeking to turnaround the Chitungwiza Town Council. There are signs that they have put their snouts on the feeding trough. The members of the team get increasingly irritated if journalists ask them to justify the money they are spending on themselves.

Yet they can easily redeem themselves if they work on service delivery and bring enough improvement to justify the outrageously high fees they are drawing from the council.

Very few of our leaders still believe in the principle of servant leadership and of being faithful stewards of resources put on their hands on behalf of the people. They see each office as an eating place and they gobble as much as possible as long as the resources last.

It will be interesting to see how voters punish these leaders in the next elections. Have they learnt enough from what they have suffered to then carefully consider the candidate offering himself or herself for public office, irrespective of the party they are coming from?

It may be wiser to choose people who have achieved a lot on their own and are coming into office to serve the people and not to enrich themselves. The tragedy in most urban councils now is that most of the councillors did not have anything to their name before being elected into office. Because they did not have anything to lose they had the courage to challenge the Zanu-PF leaders that were in office and succeeded.

But after winning, they have nothing else to offer to the people and lot to take for themselves.

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(HERALD) Tough times lie ahead for ANC

COMMENT - Take with a barrel of salt. There are not a lot of provable statements in this article.

Tough times lie ahead for ANC
Friday, 30 March 2012 00:00
Udo W. Froese

South Africa’s “Sunday Times” reported on Sunday, March 25 2012, “Phosa warns of Arab Spring in SA”. This year is South Africa’s ruling ANC’s presidential year. In the build-up to the Conference in Mangaung (Bloemfontein, Free State Province) in December, a certain force is out to discredit and undermine the movement from within.

As re-called, former president Thabo Mbeki’s brother, public speaker Moeletsi Mbeki, warned of a so-called “Arab Spring”, which would result in a criminal “regime change”, so did ANC treasurer-general Mathews Phosa, last Friday, March 23 2012, in Durban at the launch of the ruling party’s book, “Unity in Diversity”.

The Pseudo-Militants and the Agents Provocateurs spin a “North African-style Arab Spring” for South Africa. Phosa cautioned of a “North African-style Arab Spring”, if “government does not effectively tackle the rising unemployment among the youth”. The treasurer-general is still positioned in the top six of the ANC hierarchy.

Like his comrades, Human Settlements Minister and ANC NEC member, Tokyo Sexwale, and expelled, former ANCYL president, Julius Malema, Phosa has a problem with the president of the ANC and head of state of the country, Jacob Zuma. Together, they play musical chairs in attacking the ANC leadership and the government.

Together with their men in the shadows, they push for the ANC deputy president, Kgalema Motlanthe, to become the next president in December this year. As reported in one of my previous pieces, a so-called “Arab Spring” with subsequent “Regime Change” would be in South African legal terms, when the fine line between democracy and High Treason is being crossed, an act of High Treason. This could unleash an uncontrollable, nation-wide civil unrest.

South Africa today is a product of the revolution of the people of this country. The glib statement on a so-called “North African-style Arab Spring” from a Mathews Phosa would seem a direct challenge to the ANC, the government, its president and the people, who sacrificed for their revolution.

An elder ANC stalwart observed, “Phosa seems to serve his old masters.” To this day the ANC Intelligence openly talks about Mathews Phosa being an “agent provocateur and a pseudo-militant”.

Ever-Popular Chris Hani’s Murder Not Put To Rest.

Confirmed reports reveal, the late, former Head of the ANC Intelligence, Joe Nhlanhla, lobbied furiously for his position. That focused move had never been experienced in the history of the movement before.

It resulted in the demise of ANC stalwart, Mswandile Philiso. Reliable reports further observe, “as soon as Nhlanhla was installed as Head of Intelligence, he started weakening the ANC’s Intelligence”.

Another highly reliable source informed this writer, “A week-and-a-half before Chris Hani was murdered, Joe Nhlanhla had spread the rumour that Chris Hani was an informer”. The source further tells, “Hani responded by calling for a meeting with Nhlanhla in the same week he (Hani) was shot.” It is public knowledge that Chris Hani was assassinated on the Saturday of the Easter Weekend of 1993. It is reliably understood that within one hour of Chris Hani’s assassination, the ANC Intelligence had caught one of his murderers. They were in hot-pursuit of his accomplice.

The reliable information adds, “Joe Nhlanhla was asked to investigate this murder. He called Mathews Phosa to oversee the case. Then both, the ANC Intelligence and the case were marginalised.

From then on Phosa muddied the waters. He merely hampered the investigation and finally stopped it.”

This writer was told, “A small Fifth Column within the ANC does exist. But, it is without any broad base whatsoever. It focuses, however, on the destruction of the ANC from within.”

During the discussion this writer had with the late Steve Tshwete, the senior cabinet minister admitted having made a mistake by accusing senior ANC stalwart Cyril Ramaphosa of plotting together with Tokyo Sexwale and Mathews Phosa to overthrow former, re-called president Thabo Mbeki.

Tshwete told this writer towards the end of his life that he regretted having mentioned Ramaphosa at all, as “he proved to be a fine political leader and astute businessman with a solid reputation”. But Tshwete insisted to his grave that Mathews Phosa and Tokyo Sexwale were agents’ provocateurs. No one could convince the late stalwart otherwise.

* Udo W. Froese is an independent political and socio-economic analyst and published columnist, based in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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(HERALD) Israeli pilot pleads not guilty to diamond possession

Israeli pilot pleads not guilty to diamond possession
Friday, 30 March 2012 00:00
Court Reporter

The Israeli pilot who was allegedly found with US$2 million worth of diamonds yesterday pleaded not guilty to unlawful possession of the gems and entry into Zimbabwe by evasion.

Shmuel Kainan Klein (58) appeared before a Harare magistrate and denied being in unlawful possession of diamonds and contravening Section 12 (1) of the Immigration Act Chapter 4:02, which criminalises entry by evasion. After the court session, Klein was re-arrested by immigration officials who were under the impression that he was in the country illegally.

His lawyer Mr Jonathan Samukange had made an application seeking to bar immigration officials from arresting his client and interfering with his bail conditions. The order was granted with the State’s consent by regional magistrate Mr Clever Tsikwa.

In his defence outline Klein said that he was in lawful possession of the diamonds and police had stolen some of them.

However, an official from the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe, said the diamonds were from Marange and conceded that the diamonds were being smuggled out of the country. Klein denied committing the offence claiming he was an agent for Masri diamonds.

“He advised them that he would be flying that afternoon to Tel-Aviv, Israel, where he would be handing the diamonds to the owner.

“He also said that he carrying the diamonds on behalf of Masri diamonds and was to hand them to Mr Nisim Masri. He told them that he was acting as his agent for the purpose of possessing and carrying the diamonds to Tel-Aviv,” read part of Klein’s defence outline.

Mr Samukange told the court that some of his client’s diamonds were missing.

“He will state that he has been shown a copy of the affidavit by Mr Clever Sithole, which shows that the total carats were 8 486.66 and further state that there is missing about 2 140.34,” submitted Mr Samukange.

He further submitted that police must have stolen them since the diamonds were in their custody.

Mr Samukange also submitted that when the diamond parcel was opened by the assayer, Klein was not represented.

He argued that the valuation of the diamonds was “extremely exaggerated” valuing them at US$220 000.

The first witness in the case a Civil Aviation Authority security officer, Ms Wendy Gomo, who was being led by prosecutor Ms Tracy Mundanga, said Klein was shaky when he presented himself at the passenger screening point prompting her to request a further search of his luggage.

She said when she discovered the diamonds Klein told her that they were objects used in a plane.

During cross-examination, Ms Gomo said she was not in a position to comment on the shortfall as she did not conduct a physical search.

Another witness Detective Shamiso Tashu of the Police Border Control and Minerals Unit said when she counted the stones they totalled 1 446 although she did not know the caratage.

In cross-examination she conceded that some of the evidence was missing.
Mr Sithole of MMCZ said when he was given the diamonds he noticed that they were Marange diamonds after seeing the texture adding that every diamond has a trace element.

He said the Marange diamonds were brownish.

He said the diamonds in question weighed 1,7kg with a caratage of 8 486 and valued at US$2 437 708 22.

Mr Samukange doubted his qualifications saying, “the court needs to rely on a qualified person not someone who has gone for a seven day crash course programme”.

After the hearing, Mr Samukange tried to prevent immigration officials from arresting his client since the court had made an order barring them from arresting the Israeli.

Mr Samukange pulled his client’s left hand while an immigration official pulled his right hand.

The parties went to the police post at the Harare Magistrates’ Courts and three immigration officials finally emerged from the post holding Klein by his belt before whisking him away in a white Mazda pick-up truck.

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(HERALD) Possessed by the devil we fight

Possessed by the devil we fight
Wednesday, 28 March 2012 21:40

There is no doubt that Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai views his political career as the White man’s burden, not only financially, but also strategically, and even diplomatically.

A man who flies to Britain to plead with the imperial power’s Premier that he “must insist on the necessary reforms to create a conducive environment for free and fair elections and a lasting solution to the crisis in Zimbabwe,” might sound reasonable ordinarily, but talking to the British Premier about the political troubles of Zimbabwe is no ordinary matter.

This is because Britain is no ordinary observer in the mass suffering that has been caused by the murderous and illegal Western sanctions imposed upon us from the year 2001, indisputably at the instigation of the much hated war criminal Tony Blair, perpetuated to higher heights by the unassuming Gordon Brown, and now under the stewardship of well-polished but murderous David Cameron.

Stripped of Britain’s vilification and propaganda, Zimbabwe’s land reforms are the most heroic thing that ever happened to Africa in the first decade of the 21st century. Just about every controversy attributed to the land reforms has a genesis from either the BBC or 10 Downing Street — two institutions our own Prime Minister holds as centres of limpidity.

Morgan Tsvangirai’s marriage to Western politicians is a morganatic one — that ancient concept of a marriage to a female of lower rank, the offspring of which do not inherit the father’s rank, though otherwise legitimate. Ironically, the name Morgan may in a sense mean one too inferior to inherit one’s own father’s heritage. Of course Morgan also means brightness in other contexts.

Whatever can be born out of the MDC-T marriage to Western puppeteers will never assume equality with Western values — will never make Zimbabwe a little England, and will never make Tsvangirai a Western democrat, not in the very least.

Recently we were made to see a mordacious Western newsreader saying Morgan Tsvangirai “is not quite as astute as his European or American counterparts.” In short the man is foolish when compared to his masters.

This was after our ill-polished Prime Minister spiritedly outpaced German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a guard of honour inspection march, only to end up outdoing the soldiers at attention by comically bowing at them. Merkel did an about turn, noticed our bowing PM, scratched his back with a surprised face, and she pointed him towards the right direction where a saluting soldier waited, after which our PM again outpaced his host going back to where the ceremonial march had begun.

The newsreader further suggested that our Prime Minister must “learn to always allow his host to lead the way,” and also that “by now he should know the colours of his country’s flag.” This was after our heedless man again outpaced Merkel towards the podium, walking straight past the podium next to the Zimbabwean fag, and bouncingly stood right at the one next to the German flag, hands rubbing and ready to read out Merkel’s prepared German speech. Again Merkel had to scratch our PM on the shoulder and lead him back to the podium for Zimbabwe.

The newsreader completed it all by suggesting that someone must tell our PM that he needs to know when to let go whenever he finds himself holding a welcoming hand extended in a gesture of warm reception. This was after the PM simply stuck to the warm and tender hand of Angela Merkel unabated at the end of all proceedings.

The YouTube video clip titled “Ungroomed Tsvangirai Needs Merkel Hand-Holding” would be funny and perhaps less relevant, if only Zimbabwe was not a serious imitator of these Western etiquettes, something that now makes all of us so embarrassed.

What the PM did can be attributable to his personal mental slowness to an extent, but it is part of the contradictions in our world system as defined by borrowed reasoning we adopt from the former colonial masters. We inherited from Western colonisers educational systems that make us dumb, that train us how not to think.

We somehow believe we can borrow democracy from those whose minority rule over us we overturned.

Morgan Tsvangirai might be a blithering political puppet, but that is only at a superficial level. The man is just like most of us, victims of a Western welfare system that only keeps us poor, foreign aid that keep African countries in permanent states of poverty, and a borrowed mode of politics that makes us mere puppets.

Sadly, we even pursue certain religious establishments leading most of us to hell. Zimbabwe is currently striving hard to embrace Western values and strategies in drawing up an egalitarian Constitution that will maintain inequality among our people. We believe blissfully that we are catching up with the civilised world, by which we mean the Western world.

We have inherited a colonial system that projects itself right into our socio-economic structure, creating in us attitudes of negative self-perception and frustration. It is the very system that creates in us mental characteristics of criminality, corruption, civil conflicts, and such other problems as diagnosed by Western aid agencies, who ultimately come carrying this white man’s burden of the suffering African, helping themselves to us, rather than helping us. Today the suffering African child has become the gold of the multi-billion dollar charity industry.

Western donor agencies are not always the remedies to our perpetual problems in Africa. They are sometimes part of the system that creates and perpetuate these problems. Our post-colonial era in Africa is but a life of contradictions.
We have no identity except the slave identity left on us by the era of slavery and colonialism. We sometimes respond to Western domination by over-compensating our perceived inferiorities.

Our academics want to impress the Westerner as the best among all Africans — as capable of doing exactly what the Westerner can do — even trying hard to forget our own history in favour of that of the white man.

When we achieve in order to show the white folk that we can do it as good as they do, such a success is a mark of social sickness on the part of Africa. The continent cannot be emancipated on the premises of the wrong reason. We do not want to emancipate ourselves on the basis of imitating the life of the white man.

There is a reason we are different to those people, and we did not fight down colonialism to impress white people as their unsophisticated imitators.

Success to the African must be a total way of life. We must get caught up in the fear of failure, even become obsessive and compulsive about the success of Africa. We must never forget that imminent disaster is on our door-step and to us success must not only be a goal but a burden, not the Westerner’s burden but our own.

What are we trying to achieve when we insist that a son of a white woman and a black Kenyan man by the name Barack Obama is 100 percent black? Are we trying to prove to the white man that we have finally become as great as he is, and hope one day he acknowledges that a black president in the White House is as good as a white one?

Is our obsessive hang-up with the history of slavery and colonialism a collective defence mechanism, a means of dealing with our hurt pride? Is our obsession with the liberation war history and the apparent exaggeration of certain of our achievements a means by which we try to make up for our post-independence ineptness? Some of our liberators seem convinced that meaningful achievement ended with their contribution to the independence of Zimbabwe.

The ache of inferiority that smites the African does not even spare the continent’s political leadership — a leadership so pathetically determined to slip into the acceptance of white people at every imaginable cost. Some like South Africa’s Jacob Zuma and Nigeria’s Goodluck Jonathan eagerly embrace foolishness in order to be accepted by Western powers — and this is precisely how Libya was bombed down to ashes on the contrived merit of Africa’s endorsement.

We have a political leadership so foolishly convinced that we fought down Western colonial domination so we can be like the white people who once ruled over us.

That is precisely why our judges still wear ridiculous looking white hair wigs, why “Vic Falls” sounds to us a lot better than Mosi-a-Tunya, and for others why English is superior to any of our local languages.

Instead of aspiring to end up like liberated Africans we have a leadership so determined to make us look like white people — a leadership so immensely possessed by the very devil we fight against.

This is precisely the reason the indigenisation program is so unacceptable to Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC-T colleagues (excluding a few like Tendai Biti and

Nelson Chamisa). To these people indigenisation is nothing but a way of scaring the white investor, and we are told doing so will cause “isolation and continued vilification,” in Morgan Tsvangirai’s words. In this sense our empowerment is inferior to what the white man thinks of it.

In other words we would rather prefer to be accommodated and showered with praises for the foolishness of not claiming the right to our own resources than be “isolated and vilified” for reclaiming what belongs to us — the way we got isolated and vilified for repossessing our colonially stolen farmlands.

The white man comes to us after we dislodge his minority rule over us, and he tells us we are no good at majority rule, and all we can do is work so hard to show him he is right. That is why we have clamoured for Western funding by posturing as a people so desperate for a democracy we have never known.

Many of us found out when we broke into white main stream Western communities that there is just as much hell in there as there is back in Africa, if not surprisingly worse. Independence is not a matter of making it into the white dominated Western system, but a matter of interrogating that system in and of itself, being independent of its excesses and oppressiveness.

We cannot define our independence on the basis of bourgeoisie nationalism either — pumping ourselves up on the basis of the past glory of defeating colonial empires, and defining whoever so “unfortunate” not to have been born during the colonial era as nationalistically inferior.

The historical exclusion of those who were too young to have witnessed the liberation war of Zimbabwe is not a sign of some moral deficiency in national affairs on their part, just like having participated in the liberation of the country is not necessarily a certificate of superior patriotism.

We have to be very careful when we think the only thing our young people need is a lesson in the amazing glory of our heroic defeating of the colonial empire, a lesson in the evil of Ian Smith and his Rhodesians, a lesson in our own sense of morality and patriotism, so we can then shout voila!

We will need a lot more than knowledge, morality, values and aspiration to take full control of our own destiny as Africans. We will need to accept our own failures and apparent foolishness. We will need to start off by knowing that none but ourselves will make Africa a competitive economic power on this planet.

It cannot be the Western foreign investor headquartered in Europe, and neither can it be some Chinese investor headquartered in Beijing. It will have to be the African investor operating from the heart of Africa.

Africa we are one and together we will overcome. It is homeland or death!

* Reason Wafawarova is a political writer based in SYDNEY, Australia.

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