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Journalist lectured on patriotism

A freelance journalist, Nkosana Moyo, was escorted by the Central Intelligence Organisation from State House when he tried to record the proceedings of a meeting between President Robert Mugabe and a United States congressional delegation and given a 30 minute lecture about patriotism.

Moyo was a correspondent for the Zimbabwe Times at the time.

Mugabe was meeting Congressmen Gregory Meeks, Melvin Watt, Jack Kingston, and Bob Goodlatte.

Moyo told a United States embassy official: “They told me I should not be used by the Americans to demonise Zimbabwe, and took all my details- address, phone numbers, next of kin, rural home- and let me go.”

He said he could not go back to State House to cover meeting because “I was no longer a in a state of mind to do anything”.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 10HARARE152, ZIM NOTES 02-19-2010

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Reference ID

Created

Classification

Origin

10HARARE152

2010-02-23 08:57

UNCLASSIFIED

Embassy Harare

VZCZCXRO0706

RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN

DE RUEHSB #0152/01 0540858

ZNR UUUUU ZZH

R 230857Z FEB 10

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0076

INFO SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC

RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC

RHMCSUU/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE

RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC

RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC

RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 0037

RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 0037

RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA

RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0037

RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 HARARE 000152

 

SIPDIS

AF/S FOR B. WALSH

ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU

ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR

STATE PASS TO USAID FOR L. DOBBINS AND J. HARMON

COMMERCE FOR ROBERT TELCHIN

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: PGOV PREL ASEC PHUM ZI

SUBJECT: ZIM NOTES 02-19-2010

 

———–

 

1. SUMMARY

 

———–

 

 

 

Mugabe Welcomes Codel Meeks/Watt…

 

Journalist thrown out of Mugabe/Codel meeting…

 

Diamond Drama Continues…

 

Zim Agrees to KP Monitor…

 

Court Orders Mining at Chiadzwa to Stop…

 

EU Extends Targeted Sanctions on Zimbabwe…

 

ZANU-PF Hijacks Civil Servants’ Strike…

 

Police Arrest WOZA Members…

 

Mexican Journalist Arrested…

 

HRW Calls Gov’t a “Failure”…

 

Rising Cost of Living Fuels Wage Demands…

 

Tobacco Selling Season Starts on High Note…

 

Companies Resort to Rights Issues…

 

 

 

———————————

 

On the Political and Social Front

 

———————————-

 

 

 

2. Congressmen Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Melvin Watt (D-NC), Jack

Kingston (R-GA), and Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) visited Harare this week

and had a nearly two-hour long meeting with President Mugabe at

State House. The delegation also met with Finance Minister Tendai

Biti and visited a USAID-funded livelihoods project. Friday’s

Herald featured a large photo of Congressman Meeks and Mugabe

shaking hands next to the headline “US pledges dialogue.”

 

 

 

3. Freelance journalist (and correspondent of the Zimbabwe Times)

Nkosana Moyo was escorted by the CIO out of a meeting between

President Robert Mugabe and the visiting Congressional Delegation.

Moyo tried to record the proceedings of the meeting when the CIO

accosted him and took him out of State House. He told PAS that they

gave him a 20- 30 minute lecture about patriotism. “They told me I

should not be used by the Americans to demonize Zimbabwe, and took

all my details- address, phone numbers, next of kin, rural home-

and let me go,” said Moyo. Moyo said he could not go back to State

house to cover meeting because “I was no longer a in a state of

mind to do anything.”

 

 

 

4. Transcripts of closed-door hearings led by the parliamentary

committee on mines and energy have revealed probable corruption and

a lack of oversight in the troubled Chiadzwa diamond fields. The

committee, led by the ZANU-PF former Mining Minister Edward

 

HARARE 00000152 002 OF 004

 

 

Chindori-Chininga, has grilled senior leadership from the

parastatals Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) and the

Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ) on their lack of

oversight of the two joint ventures operating in Chiadzwa, Mbada

Diamonds and Canadile Miners in several hearings this month. Mining

Minister Obert Mpofu is allegedly due to testify soon as well.

 

 

 

5. This week Zimbabwe agreed to allow a South African

industrialist with extensive diamond mining experience, Abbey

Chikane, to serve as the resident monitor for the Kimberley Process

Certification Scheme (KPCS) after several other potential monitors

were rejected. Chikane’s appointment is the result of the KP work

plan developed in October 2009 at the KP Plenary in Namibia.

Chikane is to have “unfettered” access to Chiadzwa is will need to

approve of diamond shipments before they can be granted a KP

certificate.

 

 

 

6. The Supreme Court has ruled that ZMDC and the MMCZ must stop

mining operations at Chiadzwa pending finalization of the ownership

dispute with African Consolidated Resources (ACR). Although ZMDC’s

two partners, Mbada and Canadile, may remain on site, they have

been ordered to stop operations. In the meantime, the GOZ has

reportedly cancelled ACR’s license to mine the Chiadzwa fields,

giving it up to March 10 to lodge an appeal. ACR contends the

cancellation is unlawful.

 

 

 

7. On February 16, the EU extended targeted sanctions on Zimbabwe

for another year and also removed six individuals (mostly deceased)

and nine companies from the list. Of note, sanctions were lifted on

Dumiso Dabengwa, a former ZANU-PF Minister of Home Affairs, who

left ZANU-PF two years ago to reform ZAPU. The EU justified the

extension on the lack of progress in the implementation of the GPA.

Although ZANU-PF dismissed the extension of the sanctions as a

non-event, it has nevertheless said it will not make any

concessions in the GPA talks until all the sanctions are removed.

 

 

 

8. Striking civil servants have said that ZANU-PF has hijacked the

strike for political reasons. Civil servants’ representatives

reported that ZANU-PF was forcing teachers to join the strike. They

reported that in Masvingo province in southern Zimbabwe, ZANU-PF

and the CIO forced Victoria High School to close at gun point and

ordered the teachers to join the strike. The civil servants are

pressing the government to increase their $150 monthly wages to a

minimum of $630. The government has said it can only increase the

paltry wages by a further $16 because it has no money.

 

 

 

9. On February 17 the police arrested two members of Women of

Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) in the eastern city of Mutare. One of the

women, Rose Rukwewo, is an elderly woman who suffers from hyper

tension. The police arrested the women at their homes for no

apparent reason other than to harass them after they had

participated in a WOZA protest march on February 16. Although the

police admitted they have no evidence to charge the women, they

insisted on detaining them for 48 hours–the maximum period the

police can hold a suspect in detention before they must appear in

court. The women were initially denied access to their lawyer for

several hours.

 

 

 

10. In Masvingo on February 12, police arrested a Mexican

journalist who was filming potential tourist sites. The journalist,

 

HARARE 00000152 003 OF 004

 

 

who was in a vehicle belonging to Minister of Tourism Walter Mzembi

(ZANU-PF) and who had a letter of authorization signed by Mzembi,

was held for several hours before being released after Mzembi’s

personal intervention. Mzembi later fumed, “We cannot attract

tourists if we do not look at our law and order. [The journalist]

wanted to film for Mexican tourists ahead of the World Cup in South

Africa, but the first call I received once he got there was he was

at a police station. He has understood that we are in a transition

and we have said it will not happen again.”

 

 

 

11. Human Rights Watch issued a harsh statement this week, calling

the inclusive government a “failure.” According to HRW’s Director,

Georgette Gagnon, “The transitional power-sharing government is a

sham. From a human rights perspective, nothing has changed for the

better. Robert Mugabe and ZANU-PF are still fully in control.” HRW

went on to call for the government to begin preparations for

holding internationally supervised free, fair, and credible

elections that will lead to a legitimate and democratic government

with the political will to bring about change. An article in The

Economist this week also suggested early elections wouldn’t be a

bad idea:

http://www.economist.com/world/middleeast-afr ica/displayStory.cfm?s

tory_id=15549373

 

 

 

———————————–

 

On the Economic and Business Front

 

———————————-

 

 

 

12. According to the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ), the

average cost of a basket of goods for a family of six rose by about

seven percent from $488.11 in December 2009 to $520.53 in January

2010. The jump was attributed to an anticipated increase in civil

servants’ salaries and high utility tariffs. To the extent that CCZ

figures are now the basis for determining minimum wages in the

public and private sectors, there will be more pressure for a

general rise in wages.

 

 

 

13. The opening of this year’s tobacco selling season started on

February 9 amidst expecations of substantial growth in the quantity

sold. The Tobacco Industry Marketing Board (TIMB) projects sales

this year of 77 million kilograms, up from 56 million in 2009. The

TIMB cites favorable prices and an increase in the number of

farmers growing the crop as the main factors behind the increase.

The use of the out-grower schemes has attracted a lot of farmers

since they are well supported by tobacco merchants when compared to

other commercial crops.

 

 

 

14. Liquidity constraints in banks and the high cost of borrowing

have forced most companies to go for rights issues and private

placements to raise money for expansion projects. During the week

under review, for example, two publicly listed companies proposed

to raise a total of $40 million through both rights issues and

private placements.

 

 

 

15. “We know their attitude. They do not want anyone, any country

in the developing world to make any meaningful development

strides.” — President Robert Mugabe, referring to the West’s

alleged efforts to block development in Africa, at the opening of

 

HARARE 00000152 004 OF 004

 

 

the Pan-African Tourism Investment Summit in Harare, February 17,

2010.

 

 

 

RAY

Dhanani

 

(5 VIEWS)

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