New York based Human Rights Watch (HRW) releases horrific details of rights defenders and pro-democracy activists torture by Zimbabwe’s police and intelligence operatives

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New York based Human Rights Watch (HRW) has released horrific details of rights defenders and pro-democracy activists being tortured by police and intelligence operatives during the recent anti-government protests.
 
The gruesome details were presented in Geneva, Switzerland yesterday, where the country’s human rights record came under global scrutiny at the United Nations’ Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR).
 
Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who is also Justice Minister, presented the country’s official report at the same meeting, which was roundly condemned by civic groups who described it as a sham and at odds with their findings.
 
Mnangagwa was quizzed over Zimbabwe’s poor human rights record, when he appeared before the Universal Periodic Review meeting of the United National Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, yesterday.
 
But, Dzamara’s family and ZLHR refuted Mnangagwa’s claims.
 
“I am working hard to establish where Itai Dzamara is,” Mnangagwa claimed.
 
Dzamara’s brother, Patson, accused Mnangagwa of lying and misleading the world.
 
“This man travelled all the way to Geneva so that he may lie. Mnangagwa is a liar,” Patson said.
 
“Since Itai’s disappearance, the Zimbabwe Republic Police has failed to come up with a lead and that has cemented our position on their purported sincerity, and I have always registered that they know what happened to Itai and they are not acting in good faith.”
 
He said the government never engaged the family, despite petitions being written to President Robert Mugabe.
 
Patson was recently arrested at Parliament Building for protesting over his brother’s disappearance.
 
ZLHR senior manager, Dzimbabwe Chimbga said: “We have a High Court order that obliges police to give updates on the investigations, but practically, we have not seen any progress. I would not even say we are working together with the government. We are supposed to work together, but there has not been any marriage in terms of the investigations and Mnangagwa’s statement is not accurate.”In Geneva, Mnangagwa was reportedly humiliated by several activists and protesters, who said Zimbabwe did not qualify to send United Nations peacekeeping forces, when at home, people were clobbered by the police during protests.
 
In his statement, Mnangagwa claimed there was no partisan distribution of food aid in Zimbabwe.
 
“Currently, we have no political prisoners and detainees in Zimbabwe and on the issue of the death penalty, for over a decade, we have had no executions in Zimbabwe,” he said.
 
He said 257 out of 396 Acts had been aligned to the Constitution, including prioritisation of alignment of laws that impinge on freedoms of expression, association and media through the omnibus General Laws Amendment Act.
 
On prison conditions, Mnangagwa said the new Prisons and Correctional Services Bill would reduce congestion.
 
Several countries urged Zimbabwe to end partisan distribution of food aid and stop infringement of the rights to petition, assembly, discrimination of persons along sexual orientation, particularly the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender communities, and media reforms, among other demands.
 
Germany recommended immediate action to be taken to amend existing laws such as the Public Order and Security Act to ensure the right to assembly, and freedoms of the Press and association.
 
Norway said the government should co-operate with civic society organisations in implementing human rights and create a safe and enabling environment for human rights defenders.
 
The Holy See (Vatican) also recommended implementation of children’s rights, especially reinforcing of policies to ensure all children born in Zimbabwe regardless of their parents’ origins are issued with birth certificates.
 
The Netherlands said Zimbabwe should repeal the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act and abolish the death penalty, ratify and domesticate the conventions against enforced disappearances and against torture, inhuman and degrading treatment.
 
They said arrests of journalists and civic society activists and demonstrators must end.
 
But South Africa and South Sudan said sanctions inhibited Zimbabwe from implementing its human rights obligations, as they created limited fiscal space. Bulawayo24.

ZRP officer, guarding Mnt Darwin high Zim School Examination papers is robbed of his AK rifle Serial number, (32153216)

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ZIMBABWE REPUBLIC POLICE OFFICER , Harare based constable George Kamudyariwa who was deployed to Mount Darwin high school to guard Zimbabwe School Examination papers was robbed of his AK 47 rifle Serial number, (32153216) in a dark school car park by five man who assaulted him. The cop was left injured, bleeding and screaming for help while the thugs fled with the rifle….More news to follow… By Sibusiso Ngwenya.

BREAKING NEWS: LONDON CITY , SUSPECTED CHEMICAL INCIDENT ,

BREAKING NEWS: LONDON CITY , SUSPECTED CHEMICAL INCIDENT , London city airport has now been declared safe and has now reopened after initially evacuating 500 passengers in a suspected chemical incident, A total of 26 passengers were treated on site while 2 others were taken to hospital for treatment. This incident did raise elements of concern amongst those affected, in light of the current terrorism alert across Europe, More news to follow ……By Sibusiso Ngwenya.

photo-Alistair Goold, BBC.

Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) warns of worsening cash shortages coupled with depreciation of SA rand and GB pound

As jittery ordinary Zimbabweans wait with bated breath for the introduction of bond notes next month, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has warned of worsening cash shortages ahead, in a further dose of bad news for the country’s dying economy.

This comes as the current severe cash shortages have seen desperate depositors swamping banks as they bid to withdraw their little savings ahead of the imminent introduction of the much-distrusted bond notes.

Addressing delegates at last week’s National Economic Consultative Forum (NECF), RBZ FROM P1

deputy governor Kuphukile Mlambo, warned that the end of the tobacco season and the depreciation of the South African rand and British pound would further exacerbate the current cash shortages.

“We are no longer an economy that is dependent on manufacturing exports. We are totally dependent on four commodity exports – tobacco, gold, platinum and chrome,” he said.

“But these minerals do not always perform well or deliver all the time. For example, the tobacco season has just ended now and between now and February we have no tobacco money. This does not really improve the situation.”Remittances are also in trouble now because someone who was sending money back home to their parents, say R1 000 … the money is now coming in at say $60 … so, although the rand amount is the same, the dollar value has fallen.

“It’s the same as those in the United Kingdom where the pound has also fallen. So in view of all these dynamics, everyone should do all they can to spare cash because the money just isn’t there,” Mlambo added.

He also explained that current cash shortages were a combination of the country’s widening trade deficit and cash leakages.

“Why the cash shortage now? I can tell you why, for many years since 2009 we have been receiving inflows of about $6 billion on average per year, with spending outflows of about $7 billion per year.

“So every year you accumulate a $1 billion gap and you are kicking it down the curb and at some point it has to bite you,” he said.

At the same time, the World Bank has also confirmed that Zimbabwe’s economy is dying, downgrading the country from its list of improved economies to the unflattering tier of struggling countries.

On the other hand, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said Zimbabwe’s economic growth will slide back further to a negative 0,3 percent this year, before shedding off more in 2017 where it is projected to fall further to a negative 2,5 percent. Source – dailynews

Zimbabwe breaks 1960s temperature records: Harare Airport, 35 degrees Celsius, Victoria Falls 41, Hwange 39 , Chivhu 36 , Marondera 34

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Zimbabwe experienced extremely high temperatures yesterday, with some areas breaking records that were set as far back as the 1960s.

Some showers are expected in southern parts of the country today.

Meteorological Services Department senior forecaster Tich Zinyemba yesterday confirmed that most a that most areas experienced extremely high temperatures ranging from 35 degrees Celsius to 42 degrees Celsius as forecast last week, although he could not readily provide comparative figures from previous years.

Zinyemba said extremely high temperatures were recorded in Chinhoyi (38 degrees Celsius), Harare International Airport, 35 degrees Celsius, Hwange 39 degrees Celsius, Chivhu 36 degrees Celsius, Marondera 34 degrees Celsius and Victoria Falls 41 degrees Celsius among other areas.

He said temperatures in Beitbridge fell because the area was cloudy.

Beitbridge recorded a maximum temperature of 29 degrees Celsius. Last Friday, the Met Dept urged members of the public to take precautionary measures to protect themselves from the adverse weather conditions.  source-byo24

Vas coda Mugabe arrives from Malaysia and jets off to Togo within a few hours of his visit to Zimbabwe for unspecified reasons

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President Robert Mugabe made a shock move today when he returned to Zimbabwe and quickly left the country.

Mugabe took off to Togo.Last Thursday, he jetted off with his wife Grace to Malaysia  shortly after opening parliament on what was said to  be a one  day business visit.

It was not immediately clear to ascertain the nature of his Togo visit. source-bulawayo24

Zimbabwe is on the verge of a massive fuel crisis as oil companies are strugging to access forex in a ‘Bond note’ Zanu PF circus economy

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LOOMING FUEL SHORTAGE: Zimbabwe is on the verge of a massive fuel crisis as oil companies are strugging to access forex in a ‘Bond note’ Zanu PF circus economy as oil companies are strugging to access forex.

Banks are short of foreign currency and the introduction of the controversial bond notes is only compounding the problem. To the Discerning eye newzimbabwevision, this is likely to stimulate progress as people rise up in defiance to President Robert Mugabe’s oppressive authority.  

It is no secret that when a fuel crisis develops, food and basic commodity shortages and black market trade and crime go on the rise. As this rises, so does crime and corruption both amongst the people and officials seek to make a profit from the suffering. By Sibusiso Ngwenya.

Visiting ‘Vas coda Mugabe’, has left Zimbabwe and flown to Malaysia

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PRESIDENT Mugabe has left for Malaysia for a working visit that is set to cement ties between Harare and Kuala Lumpur.

The President was seen off at the Harare International Airport by the two Vice Presidents Emmerson Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko, service chiefs, ministers and senior civil servants.

Zimbabwe and Malaysia enjoy cordial relations that date back to the days of President Mahathir Mohamad.

President Mugabe was accompanied by First Lady, Dr Grace Mugabe, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Development Cde Joram Gumbo and Foreign Affairs Minister Cde Simbarashe Mumbengegwi.

Meanwhile, VP Mphoko will be Acting President. By Munyaradzi Huni. source-chronicle

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Mugabe cancels Botswana trip, and plans this week to humiliate Botswana’s president Khama at Lesotho’s 50th independence celebrations,

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PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe will this week travel to Lesotho for the volatile southern African country’s 50th independence celebrations, just a week after he snubbed a similar invite from his Botswana counterpart, Ian Khama (pictured), as hostility between the two leaders intensifies.
 
Mugabe cancelled a scheduled trip to Botswana after Khama told an international news agency, Reuters, that it was time the 92-year-old Zimbabwean leader steps down due to old age.
 
Khama said Mugabe had overstayed in power and was now a liability to Zimbabwe and the Sadc region.
 
But a State media columnist, revealed to be Mugabe’s spokesperson, George Charamba, at the weekend intimated that Mugabe would use his Lesotho trip this week as a way to hit back at Khama.
 
“President Mugabe has been invited (to Lesotho’s celebrations) and from what I understand, he is likely to honour the invitation. Just by so doing, President Mugabe will finally vividly make his point, relish his day through a damning comparison,” columnist, Nathaniel Manheru wrote.
 
“He will be able to quietly chastise Khama, while showing the Batswana people how much of a huge cost their leader’s blunderous (sic) diplomacy is to the two peoples, who are also close neighbours historically and even consanguineously.
 
“But the whole contrast will once more bring to the fore how, under Khama, Botswana has pursued a foreign policy, which is non-Africa, non-Sadc and non-collegial.”
 
Manheru hinted that Botswana had offered Zimbabwe an explanation on Khama’s supposed statement.
 
“… because Botswana decided on a quiet explanation tendered to the Zimbabwe government, but without taking the trouble to make a public retraction of the story. To me that said a lot,” he wrote.
 
“In the first place, he (Khama), out of his own volition, invited the Zimbabwean leader for his country’s national day, with his solicitous lady chief of protocol pressing the Zimbabwean delegation (to Zambian leader, Edgar Lungu’s inauguration) to know if President Mugabe was coming.
 
“Khama did not have to invite President Mugabe, all the more so given his weird views on Mugabe’s tenure. Why slur the dignity of your nation’s commemorative event by inviting an unfit guest? It is this paradox, which seems to give credence to a reading that the invitation was done without any sincerity and in the hope that the invitee would turn it down. Which the delayed confirmation from Zimbabwe almost did.”
 
Information minister Christopher Mushowe yesterday confirmed that Mugabe would make the trip to Lesotho, but played down the alleged diplomatic tiff between Zimbabwe and Botswana.
 
“President Mugabe will be travelling to Lesotho, it’s true. His failure to travel to Botswana had nothing to do with the so-called statements attributed to President Khama. These are heads of States, with direct access to each other. If any of them has advice for the other they do not need to use the media. The media wants to create a situation that is non-existent,” he explained.
 
Mushowe said Mugabe failed to attend Botswana’s independence anniversary celebrations because the trip coincided with a Zanu PF event the veteran politician could not afford to miss.
 
“The Botswana event coincided with the Zanu PF women’s league meeting that was so important the President had to be there. Botswana and Zimbabwe are friends and have been since the struggle because our people sought refuge in that country,” he said.
 
“Some used it as a passage to Zambia to join the war and these ties are as strong as ever.”
 
Asked if there had been interaction between Mugabe’s office and Khama over the Botswana leader’s statements, Mushowe shot the suggestion down.
 
“Interaction for what? Because, to us, it is a media creation and there was no need for that. They have met several times and our two countries are members of Sadc. Our leaders have many forums where they can discuss issues if they have any.” By Richard Chidza. source-newsday
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