Vice-President Joice Mujuru With Her Chinese Counterpart, Zeng Qinghong
Originally uploaded by Pan-African News Wire Photo File
ACTING President Joseph Msika has described China as the country’s "all-weather friend" as evidenced by its continued support to Zimbabwe when Western countries have imposed illegal sanctions on Harare.
Commissioning 97 trucks procured from China by Road Motor Services in Harare yesterday, Cde Msika said Government’s Look East Policy was bearing fruit.
RMS is a subsidiary of the National Railways of Zimbabwe.
"Today represents yet another milestone in our longstanding cordial relationship with one of our ‘all-weather friends’, the People’s Republic of China," he said.
"This, to me, strongly demonstrates our resolve to continue to nurture and foster stronger links with our allies in China. As we should all be aware, the People’s Republic of China has always been committed to our fight for independence and they remain steadfast in their support for our efforts to socially and economically emancipate our people."
Acting President Msika said the bulk of agricultural equipment received by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe in November and distributed under the second phase of the Agricultural Mechanisation Programme were sourced from China.
"Allow me to take this opportunity on behalf of the people and the Government of Zimbabwe and indeed on my own behalf, to profoundly thank the people and the Government of the People’s Republic of China, for their committed and unwavering support to our nation," he added.
Cde Msika noted that China’s support comes at a time when Zimbabwe is facing economic challenges precipitated by illegal sanctions imposed by Britain and her allies.
As a result of the sanctions, he said, the Government adopted a number of economic development strategies, among them the Look East Policy.
Under this policy, Zimbabwe has turned to friendly countries in the Middle East, the Eastern bloc and the Far East for new and advanced technologies and business opportunities in agriculture, commerce, energy, mining, transport and tourism.
"I am therefore extremely pleased to note that NRZ and its subsidiary, Road Motor Services, has embraced the Look East Policy in their overall business strategies, hence the delivery of the vehicles before us from China," he said.
The vehicles, comprising 68 North Benz tractor trucks (30-tonne capacity), 16 North Benz delivery trucks (30-tonne capacity), eight triaxle tipper trailers (45- tonne capacity) and five fuel tankers (42 000 litres capacity), were procured from a Chinese manufacturer, Camco.
The vehicles were procured through an Eximbank of China concessionary loan to replace the old unserviceable RMS fleet and to complement seven trucks received from Camco International in February last year.
Acting President Msika said the fleet would be distributed to all the country’s provinces where it would operate from RMS depots complementing the bulk transport rail services provided by NRZ.
He urged individuals and organisations wishing to transport bulk goods to seriously consider using rail transport as operated by NRZ in tandem with RMS.
"Cases that come to mind include, among others, manufacturers for transportation of their raw materials and end products, the farming community for its agricultural inputs and produce, the mining sector for its mineral products and thermal power stations and tobacco farmers for their coal supplies."
The NRZ and RMS serve as a one-stop bulk transport service.
Customers will have their bulk goods picked up from their point of origin by RMS trucks for loading onto the NRZ rail transport network.
At the end of the rail network, RMS trucks take over again to deliver the goods to the intended destination.
Customers are charged as if the goods have been transported by rail only, affording users a competitive advantage over those using either road or air.
Cde Msika urged RMS to observe a strict maintenance regime for the vehicles so that they play a pivotal role in the economic turnaround programme.
He also encouraged the NRZ and RMS to establish synergies with the farming and the business communities, as their support would be critical in the repayment of the loan used in procuring the trucks.
"It will be remiss of me if I failed to acknowledge the prudent and efficient conduct of business by the NRZ which has enabled them to operate profitably and to, for the first time in the history of the parastatal, declare a dividend to its shareholders. It is my fervent hope that you will be able to maintain this business culture and that other parastatals will be able to emulate you. Only this way can we reduce dependency on the national fiscus by our parastatals."
We must not sabotage the revolution
By Chinondidyachii Chinondidya-Chinosekerera Marar
CDE George Charamba’s prescient observations in the September/October 2007 issue of New African on the criminal activities of certain elements of the local petit-bourgeoisie in undermining our economy and politics of liberation provide an appropriate context within which to openly discuss our need for vigilance against ‘inside enemies’ at this critical stage of Zimbabwe’s national democratic revolution against neo-colonialism.
Observing that the West’s politics of ‘regime change’ have exposed the limitations of Zimbabwe’s managerial ‘bourgeoisie’
class for what it truly is, namely ‘an ornamented underclass which has to make way before real indigenisation of the economy can take place," the Permanent Secretary for Information and Publicity concluded by asking two poignant but very vital questions: "In the case of Mugabe and Zanu-PF, the fundamental question remains: Without a matching, radical nationalist economy owned by a stratum with a matching consciousness, can its politics of radical, anti-imperialist nationalism survive and stand?…But can (President Mugabe) risk another attempt on him through the same economy?"
To both questions the answer is "no", as indeed Charamba suggested, and that being so, then it is only fair that President Mugabe’s next mandate " must tackle the question of ownership of the economy, and the accompanying one of founding appropriate cadre-ship for it, the same way Malaysia’s Mahathir did (for), after all, he (President) now controls the land which calls the tune for the rest of the economy’. Ah. Beautiful!
As to whether or not President Mugabe can do it, the answer certainly is a loud and emphatic yes. It has to be done, and done urgently, because when one examines the selfish material interests and aspirations of groups or classes that have emerged during this on-going revolution, as well as their revolutionary capacities, it becomes clear that the majority of them are greedy, selfish, materialistic, lacking in both discipline and ideological clarity, reckless, unscrupulous, corrupt, reactionary, and too that they are working very closely with the enemies of Zimbabwe to sabotage the country’s economy.
Addressing the 72nd Ordinary Session of the Zanu-PF Central Committee on December 12 2007, President Mugabe noted the involvement of "entrepreneurs" and "high profile Government officials" in corrupt and unscrupulous business activities: "Sadly, most of the businesses are either owned or fronted by our people — yes, the same people we assisted when yesteryear, they went into business through various government-sponsored or initiated schemes designed to economically empower them."
It is true that the majority of these high-profile Government officials and very powerful politicians and businesspeople owe their lofty statuses and material possessions to Government's policy of African indigenisation, because colonial governments never gave Africans the opportunity of fulfilling their aspirations, or even of making headway into middle class affluence.
But, rather than strengthening the methods of action and vigilance to neutralise the activities of our imperialist enemies and their lackeys, the local petit bourgeoisie are teaming up with imperialists in subverting the economy; and by so doing are betraying their own people. They betray their own people in order to protect their own positions and to sustain their extravagant and debauched lifestyles.
They seem eager to embrace an enslaving ideology which in general determines their negative and cynical attitude towards the justness of the struggle, towards the final and irrevocable abolition of neo-colonialism. The conclusion becomes inescapable, therefore, that this group is against our struggle outright, perhaps unconsciously so on the part of a minority few among them, but nonetheless against national liberation struggle.
When Africans say in their simple language that "no matter how hot the water from your well, it will not cook your rice," they express with singular simplicity a fundamental principle, not only of physics, but also of political science.
For the simple reason that businesspeople that have emerged in this country in the past seven years — company directors, managers and so-called technocrats in the corporate, banking, financial and public sectors, including others in manufacturing, retail and business — betray values, norms and other characteristics that are influenced and mediated by external factors, characteristics which militate against the noble causes of freedom, progress and happiness for all.
These so-called entrepreneurs and others in key national positions have proved that they are working with local and foreign companies, as well as foreign funded NGOs, including the MDC, to wage an economic war against the Government of Zimbabwe, and for purposes of effecting the Western US-led ‘regime change’ agenda. As the President noted, it is unfortunate, tragic even, that among those perpetrating such seditious acts are people in whom the ruling party and Government have reposed confidence; people who have largely benefited from Government’s generous indigenisation and farm mechanisation politics.
In view of this, it is time for Zanu-PF to seriously introspect, starting today, the first day of 2008, and thereafter take stern measures against these imperialist lackeys who in broad daylight shout party slogans and pretend we are together, yet behind the scenes, nicodemously, are involved in dirty deals, fuelling all sorts of corrupt activities. These are the same people whom Dr Tafataona Mahoso identified (Sunday Mail, December 30 2007) as "the corporate aristocracy whom dominate the global speculative economy."
In light of this, it is perfectly reasonable to conclude that those who master-minded the "cash crunch" are the same people responsible for the wave of unprecedented price hikes, but on this occasion they wanted to scuttle and sabotage many of the ruling party and Government programmes scheduled for the month of December 2007.
Mahoso summarises their real motives thus: To influence and tarnish Zimbabwe’s triumphant appearance at the EU-Africa summit in Lisbon; to target the Million Men and Women March organised before the EU-Africa Summit; to target the Extraordinary Congress of the ruling Zanu-PF party; to demoralise all resettled farmers at the peak of the planting season; and to attack the morale of ordinary citizens during the festive season.
The target for blame and criticism, as always, is President Mugabe, our heroic Commander-in-Chief in this war against imperialists! Comrades, those of us in Zanu-PF must seriously introspect and ask ourselves how it is that we have allowed people who are not with us and yet pretend to be with us, to occupy strategic national positions and who, it turns out, constitute a local middle class or pseudo petit-bourgeoisie group dominated by and on the payroll of foreign ruling classes and imperialist saboteurs and their proxies? Is it too difficult for us to remove these people varikuita hu hongipongipo, and who by their conduct, behaviour and attitude are known imperialist lackeys planted in our midst by our enemies so they can wage a relentless economic war against our government and country?
Why are we allowing the country to be hijacked by criminals, by sell-outs who are no different from Rhodesian Selous Scouts, these who became insiders-turned-outsiders? Aren’t these the same people that, during the occasion of Cde Bernard Chidzero’s burial, President Mugabe graphically termed "the eager butchers of the revolution"? Where is the enforcement of discipline in Zanu-PF, the discipline contained in Herbert Chitepo’s Ten Points of Attention—"Musabe, dzorerai zvamunenge matora; dzidzisai vanhu vazive gwara remusangano — words immortalised in General Mao’s revolutionary songs?
Else we bring back the discipline of the liberation struggle, that saw many comrades instructed to take "prone positions", and comrade vahuu nechirimi chavo saying "seti-five (35) shamhu kumagadziko", because kuhondo it had been accepted that ‘chokwadi cha comrade chiri kumagadziko?' and that was discipline! Now, the "cash barons" are known, so we are told, but nobody wants to arrest them! The other "cash baron or baroness" is allowed to escape the long arm of the law, literally, because exhibits for use in court were reportedly "destroyed"!
Ah, comrades, do we recognise that we are facing an election in three months time, and that as much as politics is a game of numbers it is also of perception? Do we have the courage of our convictions as a party? When all these shenanigans happen, are we not worried that it is our Government and President Mugabe who is always unfairly blamed? Zvambonyanyoita seiko nhai vana vechidhaka, nhai imi vana vevhu (whats wrong Sons of the Soil)?
You see there is one form of struggle which has not been specifically mentioned in revolutionary programmes, but which we consider to be fundamental. We refer here to the struggle against our own weaknesses. We must recognise that we ourselves and the other liberation movements in Africa in general have not managed to pay sufficient and particular attention to this important problem of our common struggle.
Now, given that the development of treacherous phenomena in a movement mainly depends — whatever its external appearance — on the interaction between its internal characteristics and the external characteristics that influence it, then we are convinced, and we warn, that any national or social revolution which is not based on knowledge of this fundamental reality runs grave risk of being condemned to failure.
Our experience of the past seven years in Zanu-PF has shown us that in the general framework of daily struggle, this battle against our own weaknesses — no matter what difficulties the enemy may create for us — is the most difficult of all. This battle is the expression of the internal contradictions in behaviour and actions of especially the petit bourgeoisie class in the economic, social, cultural (and therefore historical) spheres, which in turn determines their ideological positions and political outlook.
It is sufficient to have followed closely the main events in the struggle against colonialism and imperialism on our continent since 1960 — the year of Africa — to recognise that numerous and great mistakes have been made, the major one being the failure to by business people or the so-called captains of industries, and sometimes politicians, to identify with the fundamental interests of the masses.
We ascribe these numerous and great mistakes to a failure on the part of liberation movements to successfully struggle against own weaknesses, and also due to their inability to resist the powerful influence of external forces, which tend to condition the internal situation of parties or movements.
Once that happens, imperialism dominates the liberation movement, which in turn becomes dependent on the same forces of imperialism.
The interplay between such dominance and dependency produces paralysis, stagnation and even in some cases regression that militates against the imperative need to rid the national liberation movement of foreign domination as well as throw off the yoke of neo-colonialism and imperialism, the two requirements which should constitute deepest aspirations of the local petit-bourgeoisie leadership.
In the end the local pseudo-bourgeoisie class, however strongly nationalist it can be, is unable to effectively fulfil its historical function; it cannot freely direct the prosecution of the revolution; and can not, in brief, be a national middle class but a class that suffers from the illusion of both political and economic power if only because it is composed of native elements which, ironically, evinces an extremely petty bourgeoisie mentality, greedily accumulating more and more material possessions, and which it defends, protects and increases through questionable business dealings and unorthodox means.
Herein resides the explanations of price increases and profiteering by the so-called captains of industry in the manufacturing, retail and business sectors.
But in reality it is scarcely even an illusion, since the submission of the local ruling class or petit bourgeoisie to the ruling class of the dominating country limits or prevents the development of truly national or native productive force, turns the bourgeoisie into a reactionary class, and inevitably forces the same local ruling class or petit bourgeoisie to abandon the ideals, goals and objectives of the revolution in favour of crumbs of bread failing from the neo-colonialists’ table.
The one thing that has to be said loud and clear is this; the nationalist group and war veterans, led and represented by President Mugabe and composed of the so-called old guard, has shown that it is honest, honest in the sense of total commitment to and identification with the toiling masses; it, too, has shown it is revolutionary in that, in spite of all the hostile conditions, it has transformed the liberation movement into a vanguard movement that today is spearheading the revolution for African economic empowerment which clearly identifies with the fundamental interests of the masses.
It is for this reason why the President has urged, and is urging, the petit bourgeoisie to equally identify with the masses.
These actual and potential class and ideological contradictions between and within the group make it imperative that we expose and locate the role of the businesspeople and leaders vis-à-vis the ongoing revolution.
As shown, the main contradiction between the classes, in our opinion the principal contradiction, is that between the affluent or upper class groups on the one hand, and on the other the poor or lower classes or povo or have nots; or simply between the petit bourgeoisie and proletariat in socialist lingo.
President Mugabe — having taken the precaution to analyse the position of the petit bourgeoisie class in the 27 years since independence in 1980, its nature, and examining how it has been working and the instruments it has been using in the run-up to and after the Third Revolution as well as during the current revolution for economic independence — has urged it to align itself with the revolution, urged it to commit suicide so to speak, arguing that by so doing, it will not lose, if anything, by sacrificing itself and its material interests for the revolution, it can reincarnate itself, and in the process receive widespread support from the people.
He is right, Comrade Mugabe! I have always said one day Africans will search for him in vain, this President whom the ideologically blind criticise day in day out, and in broad daylight and with searchlights in their hands! Aikaka, Zuva rakati kanan'ana!
But perhaps, as Cde Charamba suggested, the President may need to tackle this question of ownership of the economy, and the accompanying one of founding a patriotic cadreship for it, the same way Malaysia’s Mahathir did. Now before the same white-led economy makes another regime change attempt on him! Pamberi neChimurenga.
Bulawayo Zanu-PF province seeks national hero status for Nyathi
THE Bulawayo Zanu-PF provincial leadership has recommended to its party headquarters in Harare that the late former diplomat and freedom fighter Dr Isaac Lintshwi Nyathi be declared a national hero.
Dr Nyathi passed away on Friday morning. A statement released by the ruling party’s provincial spokesperson, Cde Effort Nkomo said the Bulawayo provincial co-ordinating committee, which met yesterday, was unanimous in its decision.
"We have met as the Provincial Co-ordinating Committee and we were unanimous in recommending Dr Nyathi for national hero status. We have since communicated that to the headquarters and we are awaiting a response," Cde Nkomo said. The Minister of Information and Publicity, Dr Sikhanyiso Ndlovu, on behalf of the Government, yesterday conveyed a condolence message to the Nyathi family.
"The Government has received the news of the death of Dr Nyathi with shock and sadness. We have since informed the President, who is away on leave, on this sad development," he said.
Dr Ndlovu said that in Dr Nyathi, the nation had lost a gallant son.
"We have been robbed of a gallant son with a reputable revolutionary history that should be emulated by the young generation and all those committed to the defence of the hard-won independence which Dr Nyathi fought for," he said.
Dr Ndlovu said the Bulawayo province had done the right thing in recommending national hero status for the late Dr Nyathi.
"The province has done the correct thing to recommend him for national hero status. We have since submitted the recommendation to the Politburo. We are very clear about his status and we hope our colleagues share the same vision with us," he said.
A long time friend and colleague in the liberation struggle, Cde Dumiso Dabengwa, was at a loss for words on the passing away of Dr Nyathi.
"He was diabetic. He constantly got admitted in hospital for regular check-ups. When he phoned that I take him to hospital I never thought it was a serious thing. After the doctor carried out his investigation he said his heart was weak and not pumping blood properly. It had got tired," he said.
"When he started getting his medication there were signs of recovery and he was very confident that he was going to enter the New Year with us. He even accompanied us on our way out. All that had remained was for the doctor to carry out a review test. We were shocked the next morning to hear that he had passed away," Cde Dabengwa said.
Cde Dabengwa said Dr Nyathi was one of the few colleagues and close friends that he had worked with during the liberation struggle who were still alive. Very few of them, if any still remain today, he recounted. He described Dr Nyathi as one person who was very down to earth.
"He was a very nice person to work with, unassuming, not too ambitious. After his last diplomatic mission he felt he had made his contribution and wanted to take a long rest. He was that kind of a person who did not want to hold onto a position forever but believed people must give way and allow others to take up the challenges. NgeSiNdebele wayesithi kusina kudedelwana," he said.
Dr Nyathi was born in 1936 at Sanzukwi area, Mangwe district in Matabeleland South province.
He did his primary education at Sanzukwi and Dombodema before proceeding to Thekwani High School for his secondary education.
He then worked as a school clerk at Mbizo Primary School in Luveve, Bulawayo, from 1951 to 1961. During the struggle, Dr Nyathi’s house in the Mpopoma south suburb became a centre of resistance activity when he divided his energy between his job with the Rhodesia Railways and party activities. It was at his house that freedom fighters were given food and money to promote the cause of the struggle.
Even South African National Congress asylum seekers passed through Dr Nyathi’s house.
His support and leadership of resistance to colonial rule did not pass unnoticed by the Rhodesian Special Branch, which arrested him several times, culminating in his detention at Wha-Wha prison for six months.
After his release from detention, Dr Nyathi crossed into Zambia to join the armed struggle.
He was later assigned to study in the Soviet Union. Following the completion of his studies he returned to Lusaka in 1967 before going back for further studies.
Dr Nyathi participated in the famed Hwange and Sipolilo battles of 1967 and 1968 respectively.
He also served as a diplomat in Kuwait.
He is survived by a daughter.