Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Zimbabwe News Update: VP Mujuru Raps Farmers for Leasing Plots; President Mugabe Warns MDC-T; 247 Defect From Opposition Party; 90 Arrested in Anti-Violence Sweep

Mujuru raps farmers for leasing plots

Bindura Bureau

VICE-PRESIDENT Cde Joice Mujuru yesterday took a swipe at some farmers in Chiweshe who were leasing land allocated to them by Government, saying such behaviour was disgraceful and demeaning the ruling party’s dignity.

Cde Mujuru was addressing more than 20 000 people at a rally held at Nzvimbo Secondary School, Chiweshe soon after donating five tractors, planters, boom sprays and generators to Kanhukamwe and other irrigation schemes in the area.

She said leasing pieces of land was tantamount to laziness and such retrogressive behaviour was wearing away Government efforts to empower farmers through giving them land.

Cde Mujuru said there was no other empowerment that was bigger than land people should begin to realise this.

She said she was concerned that Kanhukamwe Irrigation Scheme had benefited a lot from Government yet production was remaining low, dampening hopes that the scheme would export and generate foreign currency.

During a briefing Cde Mujuru heard that only 30 percent of the farmers at the scheme were excelling with 50 percent being average farmers.

Some of the farmers, Cde Mujuru was told, were leasing their plots to other farmers.

"What do you get when you lease your pieces of land? How do you expect to survive with your families?

"Such behaviour is the root to other disgraceful behaviour like stealing and prostitution.

"Do you think there would be another Government that would come and do the farming on your behalf while you sleep?" she asked.

Cde Mujuru said Government was fighting to protect land, which is the country’s heritage and those farmers leasing their pieces of land would evidently be able to defend it against the British imperialists, who are coming through puppet opposition parties like MDC-T.

Cde Mujuru urged people in Mashonaland Central and the country at large to avoid being fooled by the opposition MDC-T party to give away land because of the effects of sanctions imposed by the Western countries.

She said the pale patch the country’s economy is going through was transient and would soon be history.

"Some countries like Germany and Brazil reached a stage when people were paid weekly, daily and hourly because of hyperinflation, but today you are going there to buy goods because it was merely a passing phase.

"Zimbabwe is going through a similar phase," she said.

Cde Mujuru said Western countries were on a major drive to illegally remove elected Governments on the continent and replace them with puppet governments like the MDC-T.

"Do you think whites, after losing land when we won independence, folded their arms and accepted that they had been defeated.

"No. They are now re-emerging in the form of opposition parties like MDC-T," she said.

Cde Mujuru urged farmers to make use of the land and be productive to beat inflation and other economic cancers.

"We appeal to you all to utilise land as there are no other means to improve our wealth, stabilise the economy other than production.

"We are aware that some of you are having problems like procuring inputs in time.

"It is because of sanctions imposed by western countries at the behest of opposition party leader Morgan Tsvangirai," she said.

Government, she said, was however, working out other means to ensure farmers get inputs in time.

The Vice President urged people in Chiweshe to guard against complacency during the forthcoming presidential run-off.

She said people should come out in large numbers and vote for the ruling Zanu-PF, the tried and tested party.

"You as individuals may have differences but when it comes to defending the national heritage unite and go and vote for the ruling party in large numbers," she said.

Cde Mujuru warned Zanu-PF supporters against violence and urged them to maintain the ruling party’s dignity.

"We do not want to hear incidents of Zanu-PF supporters or its leadership having been involved in violence.

"Some people are taking advantage of politics to settle their scores," she said.

Cde Mujuru said Zanu-PF supporters are known for shunning violence or other crimes like rape and stock-theft.

She reminded the congregation that comrades died because of land during the liberation struggle and their spirits should be respected through voting for President Mugabe during the June 27 Presidential run-off.

President warns MDC-T

Herald Reporters

President Mugabe has warned MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai and senior opposition officials that the Government will hold them responsible for the orgy of organised violence that has rocked some parts of the country and would soon invoke measures to curtail it.

Addressing thousands of Zanu-PF supporters at Siakobvu Business Centre in Kariba and Rimuka Stadium in Kadoma, President Mugabe said the Government had noted with grave concern the organised violence against people, especially Zanu-PF supporters, through the burning of houses and kidnappings, among other heinous crimes.

Government, he said, would soon invoke what is known in law as "vicarious responsibilities and liabilities" against MDC-T leaders and senior party officials saying the terror attacks were premeditated and organised, exposing them to liabilities.

"Zvino chitema chakaipisa cheMDC mweya wehuSatani wekupisa dzimba dzevanhu. Zvino zvikarega kumira watichanenera ndiTsvangirai nevamwe vake.

"These cases of arson, kidnappings and violence on people coming from the MDC have shown a definite pattern which we read across the country. There is a definite plan of violence, an organised system of violence aimed at disturbing law and order. Let them be warned that we will invoke what is known as vicarious responsibility and liability which means we will hold them responsible for the violence across the country," he explained.

This invocation, he said, was only applied in special circumstances that threaten to disturb peace.

President Mugabe explained that normally parents are not held responsible for the misdeeds of their children, but when their operations show an organised streak then people are left with no choice but suspect complicity by the parents.

"This wave of violence has to stop and Government would not allow people to suffer and for people to wantonly disturb law and order . . . we cannot allow it to continue."

Cde Mugabe made the remarks after he was briefed about the violence being perpetrated by MDC-T supporters in Mola communal lands where they have reportedly barricaded roads using logs and have gone on a spree of arson that has displaced people and left others injured.

Three people have since been arrested in connection with the disturbances while some MDC-T supporters have left the opposition party to rejoin Zanu-PF.

Mr Fanta Masaka said he rejoined the ruling party after realising that MDC-T had nothing to offer.

He said people should not vote with their stomachs and desire for such niceties as sugar because they did not match the heritage that President Mugabe and Zanu-PF has bequeathed to them through land redistribution and indigenisation programmes.

Turning to the forthcoming run-off, President Mugabe said he was chosen by the people at the 2004 Zanu-PF congress and he accepted to return the people’s trust.

MDC-T, he said, dithered on whether to participate in the election while waiting for a signal from their masters in the West.

"VeMDC vakamboti hatidi, voti tinoda kunge musikana ari kunyengwa. Tsvangirai pazvakabuda kuti hapana ahwina akabva atizira kuBotswana uko akazongodzoka anzi naAmbassador wekuAmerica (James McGee) dzokera tikachiona chichidzoka chichimhanya. Akakumbira armoured car kubva kuBotswana namaguards asi vakati kwete kana uri murombo tinogona chete kukutengera ticket rendege rekuti udzoke kumusha ndokudzoka kwaakazoita," said the President amid laughter from the crowd.

President Mugabe said Zimbabwe was under threat from Western imperialist forces fronted by MDC-T and people need not look further than events after the March 29 elections when whites thought the opposition had won.

He said most farmers who lost their land and had gone to neighbouring countries such as Zambia, Malawi, South Africa, had returned to reclaim their land.

Cde Mugabe declared that the land would not be returned to the whites as long as war veterans and other progressive thinking Zimbabweans in the country were still alive.

He said Anglo-Saxon interests vested in MDC-T were also evidenced by US Assistant Secretary for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer, who parroted claims by MDC-T that they had won the presidential elections before the official announcement by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.

"Kamusikana kekuAmerica kakauya kachiti Tsvangirai ahwina vanofanira kutonga. Isu tikati ibva kuno. Kakanga kava kuzviramba kakadzokera kwavo."

He said Anglo-Saxons were working together to destabilise Zimbabwe by imposing sanctions in the vain hope that people would revolt against Government and vote for the puppet MDC-T to further the regime change agenda.

President Mugabe said Zimbabwe had minerals like platinum, chrome, nickel, which were complemented by the recent discovery of uranium that he said Government would soon look into ways of fostering co-operation and assistance from China and other countries in harnessing the resource for energy development.

He said there was wealth in the land as evidenced by the returns that resettled farmers have yielded saying the whites tried to hoodwink Zimbabweans into thinking that there was no wealth in farming by putting on shorts and dressing shabbily.

He said chiefs should identify people who need land and forward their names to Government.

Government, he said, had to put in place measures to empower people and ensure the availability of basic commodities and clothes at reasonable prices through the establishment of people’s shops.

He urged people to vote for him, saying voting for him was voting for Zanu-PF which has a history of liberating the country and working to uplift and empower people.

President Mugabe said Government was committed to improving the lives of people in the Zambezi Valley, where people survive through hunting and fishing.

The First Lady, Amai Grace Mugabe, Politburo members Cde Nathan Shamuyarira, Cde Ignatius Chombo, Central Committee members from Mashonaland West, provincial chairman Cde John Mafa, Chief Mola and other traditional leaders attended the rally.

Addressing a capacity crowd at another rally at Rimuka Stadium in Kadoma later in the day, Cde Mugabe said people should understand that when they vote for MDC-T they would be voting against themselves and selling out the country’s heritage.

"Tinozviziva kuti kune nzara nekushaikwa kwezvatinoshandisa asi mungatengesa nyika nekuti mashaya?

"Imi mukati nyika yarwadza mukati ngativhotere ichi chibato makatengesa nyika masikati machena.

"We are lucky midzimu yakaramba kuti nyika iende. The vote was not disastrous (after March 29) but we are saying don’t vote against yourselves, vote for your country, your legacy and your heritage that you would bequeath to the future generations."

Cde Mugabe said celebrations by whites after the premature announcement by the MDC-T should inspire people to be strong in defending the country’s sovereignty.

"We need to be strong, to know that this is our country, Zimbabwe. We have nowhere else to go.

"The whites have a lot of places to go. The Anglo-Saxon world is very large and Zimbabwe is small but endowed with riches, underground, on its land we have to utilise, our forests with its birds, animals and everything that is found in it.

"The country also has the people, sons and daughters, which is our first resources for developing the country," he said.

He said people should know that the land in the country is sacred and should never be sold.

"Ivhu iri ratinaro rinoyera, haritengeswe, tinoripfumbudza richisara riripo, haritakurwe.

"Mabhunu havafaniri kukanganisa pakati pedu asi vakauya kuti vashande pamwe nesu for the good of our people then we would accept them."

He said the Government would continue to work with whites that want to see the country develop.

"We would work with those who want to help the development of the country but to imperialists we say down with them."

Cde Mugabe said as scholar of Kwame Nkurumah he learnt a lot of lessons about imperialists forces.

"I learnt from Nkurumah to be wary of imperialists, he taught me that only a dead imperialist is a good one.

"The second lesson was to follow my principles; this should not be bought.

"We should have the sense that the country is mine, I would die for, look after it and would never sell my country."

"We should also know that principle is sacred, can’t be sold on the altar."

"Izvi zvinofanira kutibatsira kudzamisa hunhu hwako, tienderere mberi zvakanaka tiri vanhu vanozvitonga.

"If change comes in another way like what the MDC-T way, which is a sellout organisation, we will not accept that.

"Change should come out of the people, come out of the Zimbabwean people, people who stand for the rights of the people," he said.

Cde Mugabe said there were people who suffered for the country’s independence and who understand the history of the struggle.

"We want leaders who stand strongly for the people, hatinzwisisane nezvimbwasungata, hatidi vatungamiriri vanoda kupfuma asi tinoda vanoshandira vanhu."

He castigated people who join the ruling party so that they could use it to be rich.

"People should come to work for the people. We want development for the people, to send children to school and develop ordinary Zimbabweans to have their own businesses. Leaders should be people-oriented," he said.

Cde Mugabe castigated MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai for not respecting ancestors and fallen heroes who died for the country’s liberation and being used by the British to reverse the gains of independence.

"Munoti hamuzive kwakabva MDC, the British formed this party when the three parties in the country agreed to start the Westminster Foundation.

"Vakati kuti tirwise bato guru rakasimba tinofanira kushanda nevanhu veZCTU. We take the secretary-general of ZCTU and make him the president while the organisation’s president becomes his deputy.

"Kana usingazive hauzive history, kana vashandi varipano vanozviziva kana usingazive hausi wemuno vakafanana nevachena vasiri vemuno.

"Hamukwanise kuona musiyano pakati pangu naTsvangirai, that is why you voted for him."

Cde Mugabe said he was different from Tsvangirai because he fought for the independence of the country, including those in the opposition.

"Takarwa hondo kuti vana teaboy vave maprofessionals kwete kuswera uchihwetera varungu.

"After independence we are saying we have our natural resources, we got them from God but Mbuya Nehanda, vanaMashayamombe nevakuru vese vakadamburwa musoro nenyaya yezvatinazvo munyika muno."

He said the war waged by the ancestors inspired him and the other leaders to fight for independence.

"Taisabvumirwa kugara kumasubburb, tikavakirwa dzimba dziya dzamunoti misana yenzou asi takati bhabhai kumisana yenzou and built proper houses.

"Ndopamunosimuka moti pasi neni, pasi neZanu-PF a-ah!

"Munoda Tsvangirai momuvhotera. Does he have the knowledge to lead the country? We are an enlightened country, ndopatinotora munhu ane pfungwa dzekumashure-shure anoti ‘Kana makasunungurwa akakusunungurai wacho ngakudzorerei pamanga makasungirirwa’."

He said there is no way Zanu-PF will let the country go back to the colonialists.

"ZvanaTsvangirai zvekuti varungu tichavadzorera nyika hazvife zvakaitika, kuzvinyepera. You can vote for him but if he brings back the whites toenda kuhondo.

"Tinoita Chimurenga chechina nokuti varungu hapana chimwe chavanoda asi regime change, asi hazviite. Takatambudzikira nyika ino saka vakomana vangavari kuhondo vakati nyika haingaende nepenzura.

"You decide for yourselves to vote for war or vote for people who work for the development of the country.

"Tirikuda kupa vanhu masimba ekuzvitira if there are any whites who want to work in Zimbabwe they should be minority partners while we are the majority shareholders."

Cde Mugabe urged people in Kadoma to be united and vote overwhelmingly for Zanu-PF on June 27.

"When you vote for me on June 27, you will be voting for Zanu-PF so that when we vote, we vote to protect the gains of independence, our heritage, for Zimbabwe, the future of our children in our minds.

"We hope to vote for Zanu-PF, for me so that I must deliver a knockout blow to the MDC-T and its Western financiers."

First Lady Amai Mugabe, who also addressed the gathering, urged people to safeguard the riches of the country.

Amai Mugabe received a donation of $5 trillion for various projects she is spearheading from Kadoma businessman, Cde Simba Chinembiri, of Savanna in the town.

90 nabbed over politically motivated disturbances

Masvingo Bureau

POLICE in Masvingo have arrested 90 suspected MDC-T thugs in Bikita as part of an ongoing clampdown against politically motivated violence that has rocked some parts of Masvingo over the past week.

At least 60 of the suspected MDC-T thugs have been arrested for allegedly torching 22 houses belonging to Zanu-PF supporters at Hwerere Village in Budzi Communal lands, Bikita, leaving scores of people homeless last week.

About 30 others were arrested in connection with the killing of a war veteran and Zanu-PF chairman in Zaka.

Police were yesterday still looking for 22 more suspected MDC-T thugs who are implicated in the burning of the houses amid suspicion that the thugs were holed up in hills and mountains where they have set up bases.

Acting Officer Commanding Police in Masvingo Assistant Commissioner Mekia Tanyanyiwa yesterday said they had arrested 24 suspected MDC-T thugs in connection with the brutal murder of war veteran Cde Mabiko Mudzingwa in the Mazungunye communal lands in Bikita.

He said police were still looking for six more key suspects in Cde Mudzingwa’s murder including MDC-T Member of the House of Assembly-elect for Bikita East Mr Admore Marima and Ward 16 Bikita councillor Mr Peter Tagarirofa.

Six others were arrested in connection with the death of Zanu-PF chairman for Zaka, Cde Felix Masava.

"We are still looking for more suspects in the Bikita murder case and also in the malicious injury to property case where people’s houses were torched by suspected MDC-T thugs in Bikita, recently.

"The suspects that we have arrested will appear in court soon but our hunt is still continuing because we still have at least six more key suspects that we want including Mr Marima and a councillor by the name Tagarirofa," said Assistant Commissioner Tanyanyiwa.

He added that police would not hesitate to bring perpetrators of political violence to book adding that the operation against suspected MDC-T thugs holed up in mountains and hills in Bikita was continuing until sanity prevailed. Some of the suspected MDC-T thugs holed up in mountains in Bikita were allegedly very aggressive and in some cases would resist police officers using deadly weapons such as bows and arrows, catapults and axes, among others.

Asst Comm Tanyanyiwa said police had also managed to recover an assortment of dangerous weapons like axes, bows and arrows, a spear and a 303 rifle after they overan a suspected MDC-T thugs’ base in Bikita recently.

247 MDC-T members defect

Bindura Bureau

TWO hundred and forty-seven MDC-T supporters in Bindura North, South and Mt Darwin East in Mashonaland Central Province have dumped the opposition party and rejoined Zanu-PF.

The largest number to leave the MDC-T was recorded in Bveke area where about 103 people announced their reunion with the ruling Zanu-PF party in Mt Darwin East constituency.

The other 100 were from Bindura North constituency, which is mainly Bindura urban while the remaining 44 switched allegiance in Mupandira area, Musana communal lands in Bindura South constituency.

Cde Christopher Chigwande, the then MDC-T Mt Darwin constituency chairman, spoke of his decision to abandon the opposition at Bveke Secondary School.

"After toiling for the MDC-T during the harmonised elections, I did not get the promised money besides the $100 million. I teamed up with my colleagues and decided to make a follow up in Harare where hell broke loose," Cde Chigwande said.

He said he and his colleagues were forced to stay at Harvest House in Harare for three weeks after being told those responsible for the payment of their money had travelled.

"We stayed at Harvest House for three weeks where we were given food once a day, in the afternoon.

"There was a critical shortage of plates such that at times we ended up receiving food in our hands," he said.

On realising he was on a wild goose chase Cde Chigwande said he decided to ask for bus fare to go back home.

"I was given $1,2 billion which was inadequate. That was only the money I got from MDC-T despite having been promised lump sums earlier before the elections. We were exploited," he said.

Mt Darwin East Member of the House of Assembly-elect Cde Betty Chikava said the June 27 presidential run-off was a matter of choosing between freedom and war.

Cde Chikava said Zimbabwe was currently fighting not the MDC-T but its Western masters.

"What they want is our wealth. You should go out in large numbers and vote for President Mugabe, a fearless leader with the people at heart," she said. She said Zanu-PF did not hate opposition parties but preferred home grown parties and not foreign funded and controlled ones like MDC-T. Mt Darwin Senator-elect Cde Alice Chimbudzi reminded Zimbabweans that Zimbabwe did not come on a silver platter and should not be let to go easily.

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