Agriculture Minister Joseph Made told United States ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray way back in January 2010 that there would be no land audit in Zimbabwe until sanctions had been lifted.
A land audit was one of the issues that was agreed at the signing of the Global Political Agreement but it has not been carried out since.
Made said sanctions were responsible for reduced supplies of electricity which in turn made irrigation difficult and curtailed fertilizer production.
With agricultural production consequently reduced, it was impossible to determine the productivity of land, a determination which would be necessary in a land audit.
Made singled out sanctions on Agribank as particularly harmful since this was the bank that customarily made loans to peasant farmers.
Claiming that he was a “chief strategist” for the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front, Made said GPA negotiations were deadlocked and there would be no ZANU-PF movement until sanctions were lifted.
He maintained that the Movement for Democratic Change and Britain had asked for sanctions to be imposed. ZANU-PF was now happy that the UK had admitted that it was up to the MDC to request that sanctions be lifted.
Viewing cable 10HARARE50, AMBASSADOR’S MEETING WITH ZIMBABWE MINISTER OF
RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHSB #0050/01 0261227
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 261227Z JAN 10
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5342
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 3281
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 3392
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 1815
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 2649
RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR 3019
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 0080
RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 0082
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 2551
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 HARARE 000050
AF/S FOR BRIAN WALCH
NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR MICHELLE GAVIN
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/26/2020
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR'S MEETING WITH ZIMBABWE MINISTER OF
Classified By: AMBASSADOR CHARLES A. RAY FOR REASONS 1.4 (b) and (d)
¶1. (C) During a courtesy call by the Ambassador, Zimbabwe
Minister of Agriculture Joseph Made stated that the Global
Political Agreement was deadlocked and there would be no
movement by ZANU-PF unless sanctions were lifted. Hewing to
the ZANU-PF party line, Made touted land reform, denied there
had been violence associated with it, and blamed the plight
of the agricultural sector on sanctions which he said
prevented farmers from accessing credit. He proposed a
working-level group be established between the Embassy and
the Ministry of Agriculture to strategize about helping small
farmers through projects such as irrigation and dam
clearance. He also commented that a drought, superimposed on
dry conditions, boded poorly for agricultural production this
season. END SUMMARY.
¶2. (SBU) The Ambassador called on ZANU-PF Minister of
Agriculture Made at the Ministry on January 25. Made was
accompanied by his permanent secretary and a notetaker. In
contrast to other meetings with ZANU-PF ministers, a
representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was not
¶3. (C) Acknowledging none of the problems generally
associated with land reform in Zimbabwe, including violence
and radical declines in production, Made told the Ambassador
that restoration of land and the right to vote were the
cornerstones of the liberation struggle. When the Ambassador
stated that the U.S., as a matter of policy, did not object
to land reform but was concerned with violence and lack of
due process, Made countered there had been no violence
related to land reform. Perhaps there had been 10 or so
deaths because of hooliganism, but this was nothing compared
to the over 4,000 deaths (with more to come) in South Africa
associated with land reform in that country. Made added that
all Zimbabwean farmers whose land had been acquired as part
of the land reform process had contested the loss of their
lands in court and had lost.
¶4. (C) The Ambassador asked whether a land audit would be
carried out as stipulated in the Global Political Agreement
(GPA). Made replied there would be no audit until sanctions
were lifted. Sanctions were responsible for reduced supplies
of electricity which in turn made irrigation difficult and
curtailed fertilizer production. With agricultural
production consequently reduced, it was impossible to
determine the productivity of land, a determination which
would be necessary in a land audit.
¶5. (C) Made asserted that sanctions (read ZDERA) were
responsible for the state of the agricultural sector since
they made lines of credit unavailable. We pointed out the
IMF had ceased lending to Zimbabwe before the passage of
ZDERA; Made responded that the IMF's actions were part of a
coordinated process leading to ZDERA. He added that private
lenders had refused to become involved in Zimbabwe because of
sanctions. Made singled out sanctions on Agribank as
Qsanctions. Made singled out sanctions on Agribank as
particularly harmful since this was the bank that customarily
made loans to peasant farmers.
¶6. (C) Claiming that he was a "chief strategist" for
ZANU-PF, Made said GPA negotiations were deadlocked and there
would be no ZANU-PF movement until sanctions were lifted.
(NOTE: Made clarified that those sanctions which would have
to be lifted were sanctions on parastatals and ZDERA. The
parastatal sanctions would have to be removed en masse. END
NOTE.) He maintained that the MDC and UK had asked for
sanctions to be imposed; ZANU-PF was now happy that the UK
had admitted that it was up to the MDC to request that
HARARE 00000050 002 OF 003
sanctions be lifted. (NOTE: Newspapers here last week
quoted British Foreign Secretary David Miliband as telling
the House of Commons with respect to the lifting of sanctions
that "...we have to calibrate our response to the progress on
the ground, and, above all, to be guided by what the MDC says
to us about the conditions under which it is working and
leading the country." The UK Embassy in Harare tried to walk
back Miliband's comment in a statement issued over the
weekend which said the UK would respond to change and reform
on the ground. Nevertheless, the ZANU-PF propaganda machine
is claiming that Miliband has proved that the MDC has the
power to end sanctions. END NOTE.) Made said he did not
understand why the U.S. had imposed sanctions, that
Zimbabwe's argument was not with the U.S., but with the UK;
it was a battle between kith and kin. ZANU-PF was in the
right and for this reason had the support of the AU and SADC.
¶7. (C) Made said he was aware that Minister of Finance
Tendai Biti had called for the lifting of sanctions on some
parastatals. He called Biti a strong person who had been
under a lot of pressure, and who had broken with his party on
the sanctions issue.
¶8. (C) Made acknowledged that despite sanctions, the U.S.
continued to do business with Zimbabwe. Numerous John Deere
and Case tractors and irrigation combines were in use,
although without credit it was impossible for Zimbabwe to buy
as many as they would like because they must pay cash for
¶9. (C) Turning to agricultural assistance, Made stated that
NGO assistance was supplanting the private sector; this was
not the way to do business. He expressed concern that some
NGOs were partisan in their distribution of food and inputs.
Nevertheless, he had no plans at this time to deny NGOs the
ability to operate.
¶10. (C) Made stated that Zimbabwe was suffering from a
mid-season drought. Such droughts usually occurred for two
to three weeks; this year it followed a moisture deficit
which had made planting impossible. The Ministry was about
to begin a first crop assessment. Made said he was aware
that USAID had satellite information on the crop situation,
but because of land reform clashes, USAID was reluctant to
cooperate and exchange information with the Ministry. He
hoped that improving relations would allow for such
cooperation. (NOTE: While USAID has participated in crop
assessments that have included the GOZ, it has not shared
USDA satellite information because of the lack of a
relationship with the Ministry. END NOTE.)
¶11. (C) Made said that personal sanctions had precluded him
from traveling to DC and European capitals to discuss
agricultural policy with his counterparts. He suggested,
however, that the Embassy and the Ministry put together
technical teams at the working level to strategize about
assistance to small farmers in areas such as irrigation and
¶12. (C) The meeting was cordial, at times friendly, and Made
Q12. (C) The meeting was cordial, at times friendly, and Made
clearly relished the opportunity to meet with the U.S.
Ambassador. It is impossible to know whether ZANU-PF
stalwarts believe what they're saying, particularly in the
case of an individual like Made who received his education in
the U.S. and should know better. Regardless, in his
conversation with the Ambassador, Made was clearly spouting
the ZANU-PF party line.
¶13. (C) Made is close to Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.
He ran for a seat from Manicaland in the March 2008
HARARE 00000050 003 OF 003
parliamentary elections and was defeated. Mugabe
subsequently appointed him to the Senate. Based on his
performance as the Minister of Agriculture and previously as
the Minister of Agriculture Mechanization (since merged with
the Ministry of Agriculture) over the last several years, he
is widely regarded as incompetent. END COMMENT.
¶14. BIO NOTE: Made received his B.A., M.A., and PhD from
the University of Wisconsin at Madison. His thesis was on
land reform in Nicaragua and Zimbabwe. He has also done
research on China. Made's wife is from Florida. His son was
sentenced in Texas last year to five years in prison for tax
fraud. END BIO NOTE.