Category Archives: Southern Africa

Chivi disaster leaves over 40 families homeless

By Charles Lotara

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CHIVI (ZIMBABWE)- The devastating hailstorm in Chivi district has reportedly left over 40 families homeless, amid fears the figure could rise.

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Hail is a form of solid precipitation. It is distinct from ice pellets, though the two are often confused. It consists of balls or irregular lumps of ice, each of which is called a hailstone.

Masvingo Provincial Administrator Fungai Mbetsa confirmed the report and said the province is engaging humanitarian organizations such as the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society to help out families which were victimized by the disaster.

“We got the report last week, and I can confirm that 40 families have been affected. We are looking forward to assist them as quick as we can. We are going to provide them with shelter and food,” said Fugai.

The most affected areas of the district were Wards 18 and 16 but Fungai says after doing assessment of the disaster, more areas and families could be affected.

“Initially it was reported that 40 families were affected. However, when assessment was carried out the number was more than that. The hailstorm affected majorly Wards 18 and 16 but there is possibility that more areas could be affected,” he said.

Meanwhile, report received by Masvingo Provincial Spokesperson Inspector Charity Mazula indicates that Rukasi, Matondo, Zimani, Maoneke and Tumba villages under headman Chipindu were the most affected.

The powerful hailstorm which started on 25th November 2017 at 2315 hours to 0245 hours 26th November, 2017 uprooted trees, swept away 41 households, and left three people injured.

Runotida Marisa, a female adult aged 68 was admitted to the hospital with a swollen head while Edward Manyanga and Miedzo Machidha (age not provided) had bruises over their bodies but the report says the two were treated and discharged.

When contacted for comment, the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society said they were yet to confirm the incidence before referring the rest of the questions to their main office.

Chivi district was also one of the affected areas when Cyclone Dineo hit Masvingo Province earlier this year where several homesteads were marooned and destroyed by floods after the bursting of Shashe River

Calls to tackle young sex workers’ menace grow

…as prostitution sucks in more teenagers

By Charles Lotara

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MASVINGO (ZIMBABWE)- The National Aids Council (NAC) says it is appalled by recently development which shows a vast number of young people indulging into a commercial sex business and calls for joint community efforts to rescue the teenagers from the menace.

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Official Logo of the National Aids Council – Zimbabwe

In an interview with Evos Makoni, the National Aids Council Provincial Manager for Masvingo, the number of young sex workers is on the rise and what still remain mind-cracking are the reasons motivating them to get into the health-threatening business.

Makoni says NAC does not condone sex workers especially those from 24 years of age and below adding that for it to be successful, relevant Ministries and Departments, including the media fraternity should be engaged to create awareness.

Ministry of Youths, Ministry of Gender and Ministry of Education and the Police Department are called upon to join hands and mitigate the rampant spread of teenage prostitution.

“We have to find mitigation to it; we can only achieve this if we engage relevant departments and ministries. Prostitution against young people is an injustice, if we can eradicate or take it out completely we would have a sustainable community.” He said.

“It is at the dawn when scantily-dressed sex workers, most of them young women, lean on the perimeter fence of a popular nightspot at Mupandawana Growth Point in Gutu,” he added

Chivi Turnoff and Zerera were also roped in as districts where commercial sex workers sit on wooden benches in front of the dimly-light bar awaiting clients while some roam around the bars, hoping to entice an imbiber.

Makoni said “Occasionally, a man comes up, negotiates with one of the sex workers, and the two stroll off to the nearby maize field.”

Analysis done by NAC so far shows Gutu leading the trail with 40 young commercial workers roaming the streets, Zerera accommodating 17 as 16 more are spotted at Chivi Turnoff in Chivi District. Complete statistics expected after the full analysis as the team from the National Aids Council is obtaining the results.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Provincial Education Director for Masvingo Andrew Chikwange says, schools are doing their best in offering sex education.

“The schools are doing their best as far as sex education is concerned. The problem is, not all schools are boarding and this makes it difficult to know what the young ones do when they are out of the school,” he said before referring additional questions to the Provincial Education Director who was not available for comments.

Masvingo Sports Club readies for life after debts

By Charles Lotara

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MASVINGO (ZIMBABWE)- The interim leadership of Masvingo Sports Club had reportedly trimmed staff members from 23 to 12 and came up with a payment plan to amortise arrears for Value Added Tax, and National Social Security Authority as the club readies for a debts free institution.

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Masvingo Golf Course

This came a few weeks after Masvingo City Council uplifted the water arrears which have ballooned to approximately $170,000, an amount the club struggled to clear since the dollarization era.

Erroc Edwards, who headed the delegation from the club in a meeting held on 29th November, 2017 explained that, the elected Sports Committee for Masvingo Sports Club stepped down in 2015 after accumulating in excess $170,000 in arrears for Municipal Bills.

 Edwards revealed that, a subcommittee consisting of former Presidents of the club on a voluntary basis to save it from total collapse adding that, there was need for City fathers to appreciate that to attain a City Status it was a prerequisite to have a Sports Club and Cathedral and as such there was need to preserve the institution.

The Club reportedly operating as a non-profit-making organization and in the event of failure to viably operate same, it would be handed over back to the Council as the custodian of public property.

The Council Minutes of the meeting held last month say, the main club required some renovations and Council could consider providing its labour for the works  as part of its contribution with kitchen and hall being sublet and membership recruitment drive to increase the revenue base ongoing.

Edwards however, dismissed the request made by the previous Club Committee to sell the Club Manager’s house to raise income stating that, the Interim Committee was not for this idea of selling the house and that it should be retained in anticipation of good times.

Town Clerk Adolf Gusha noted that, there was a standing Council Resolution on the membership of Councillors and Senior Management to the Sports Club but after their presentation, the Interim Committee was excused.

It was proposed and agreed that Council writes off the debt owed by the Sports Club to enable them start on a fresh page.

The debate ensued with the Committee highlighting that there is need for the Club to embark on a membership recruitment drive to increase its revenue base and utilise current sporting facilities.

 

Former bigwigs seek return to ZANU-PF

By Charles Lotara

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MASVINGO (ZIMBABWE)- Former ZANU-PF political bigwigs Kudakwashe Bhasikiti and Claudious Makova have last week announced their intention to return to the ruling party from the embattled Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) a few days after the inauguration of Emmerson Mnangagwa as the new President of Zimbabwe.

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Kudakwashe Bhasikiti

Bashikiti and Makova joined ZimPF which was formed last year after Mugabe hounded several officials from Zanu PF on untested allegations of wanting to topple him from power.

Speaking in a pre-recorded video clip Makova said, now that Mugabe is out of the picture he feels at ease to re-join the ruling party that is now led by Mnangagwa.

“The removal of the G40 cabal and the removal of one centre of power from Zanu PF gives me enough confidence to revert to my party and continue to fight for the total emancipation of our people in our people-driven party Zanu PF.

“My motivation is to remain a servant of the people in a party that I have served for the greater part of my life,” said Makova.

The two politicians have stood together in the last three years jumping from one political party to another, but never really fitting in.

One of the founding elders of the ZPF and former Cabinet minister in Mugabe’s government — Didymus Mutasa who was also sacked from Zanu PF in the run up to December 2014 congress — described the decisions as ‘funny.’

“Now that there is freedom in Zimbabwe let them do as they please, but let them not jump from one party to another. They jumped from (the then ZPF led by Joice) Mujuru and then came to us and they jumped from us to join the (Zimbabwe People First led by Agrippa) Mutambara, now they are going back to Zanu PF. It’s very funny,” said Mutasa.

Bhasikiti who is also the former Minister of State for Masvingo Provincial Affairs said when they were fired from the party there were people who rejoiced over their exit.

“My last word to you comrades is that we have seen it and we now understand. There were others who were happy when we were dismissed and today we are welcomed back home,” he said.

Makova and Bhasikiti’s days in the political wilderness were largely because they had fallen out of favour with Mugabe, whose long political career came to an end on November 21 when he resigned ahead of an impeachment by Parliament.

Along with Bhasikiti, Mutasa and Rugare Gumbo, Makova parted ways with Mujuru early this year and retained the name of the party that they formed after a bitter expulsion from Zanu PF.

It was not long before ZPF split again in the middle and Makova and Bhasikiti dumped Mutasa and Gumbo to follow retired brigadier general Mutambara, who kept the name ZPF.

History repeated itself again as the two politicians crossed swords with Mutambara over a leadership raw.

“I have already resigned from ZPF where I was now serving as the secretary-general of the party. I find no reason to be serving in any other party when Zanu PF has reverted to its original ideals by the “operation restore legacy,” said Bhasikiti as he seeks to rejoin longtime comrades at Zanu PF.

Just like Bhasikiti, Makova in his letter to Mutasa and Gumbo said the two co-leaders of ZPF should seriously consider closing shop and returning home to Zanu PF.

“It was my great expectation that we should have collectively closed shop or disbanded our party ZPF and go back to Zanu PF where we originally all belonged,” said Makova.

 

ZIFA to honour Mnangagwa’s presidency

By Own Correspondent

HARARE (ZIMBABWE)- The Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) is set to organize a celebratory international friendly match to show honour to the historic assumption of office by President Emerson Mnangagwa, the ZIFA chairman for Eastern Region Nobioth Magwizi confirmed the development.

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ZIFA President Phillip Chiangwa

Magwizi said, the match which will be played between the men’s senior soccer team of Zimbabwe and Zambia is scheduled for 23rd December, 2017 at the National Sports Stadium in Harare adding that, Zimbabwe and South Africa’s football legends will provide a pre-match entertainment as a curtain raiser on the same day.

According to a press statement issued by the ZIFA’s national office last week, sport in general and football in particular is a proven catalyst for unity, peace and social cohesion.

“As the custodians of the nation’s most popular sport code, ZIFA duly appreciates the sincere call by His Excellency for every citizen regardless of political orientation, tribe, gender, colour or creed to positively contribute towards the building of our nation.”

“We are confident that the new start that the nation has been granted in the hands of His Excellency Cde Mnangagwa will lead not only to the revival but flourishing success of sport. ZIFA once again takes this opportunity to congratulate Cde Mnangagwa on his elevation to the position of Head of State and government of Zimbabwe,” it added.

On a related story, Masvingo United has been promoted to Division One after beating Torkwe Mukosi 1-0 last week, ending their long stay out of the league.

Last year it was reported that the club was handed a two-year suspension by the regional football governing body for taking football matters to the courts of law but Magwizi who is the current ZIFA Chairman for Eastern Region downplayed the report and said, only an official was penalized.

Masvingo reacts to ED’s presidency

MASVINGO (ZIMBABWE)- Masvingo Province had reacted to the presidency of Emerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa who was sworn in last week.

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President Emerson Mnangagwa

Mnangagwa was appointed and endorsed by the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) as an ideal replacement for Robert Mugabe, a few days after firing the former veteran leader from the party.

He (Mnangagwa) has taken over after the official inauguration last Friday with a string of tasks ahead of him.

The people of Masvingo, a province regarded as a stronghold of ZANU-PF have voiced their concerns on what they think the president should focus if change is to be achieved as needed by the citizens.

A member of opposition party who spoke to The New Day Online says, re-engagement with the international community can be one of the vital steps towards uplifting the country’s ailing economy.

“I think re-engagement with the international community is a positive move. If we are saying we should work with the international community we are not saying Zimbabwe should be given back to our colonial masters, we simply need countries which are willing to work with us and invest in the country,” he said.

“Another point of concern is free, fair and credible elections. Mnangagwa should know that this is one of the key factors that make democracy flourish. Transparent and fair elections are a resemblance of true democracy,” added the source.

Takavafira Zhou, a political analyst and member of parliament from Mberengwa said Mnangagwa should now embrace corporate governance and above all observe local processing of natural resources than siphoning them out of the country.

“There is need for corporate governance, transparency, accountability and equity. We also need to check high profile corruption that has become routine rather than episodic. Above all, we should value and observe corporate governance and local processing of our natural resources rather than plundering and siphoning of raw materials from Zimbabwe to developed countries,” he said.

A group of university graduates who spoke to The New Day Online on condition of anonymity said, the most dire situation which the president should prioritize is the creation of employment opportunities which  according to them can be done through reviving the industries which were hit by economic meltdown for decades.

Zuma likens himself to Steve Biko

President Jacob Zuma used an analogy likening himself to Biko. 

PRETORIA – President Jacob Zuma has likened himself to Steve Biko, saying the Black Consciousness leader was hated by some, much like himself.

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President Jacob Zuma lays a wreath at the prison cell at Kgosi Mapuru II Correctional Service Centre where liberation struggle hero Steve Bantu Biko died on 12 September 1977. Picture: GCIS.

President Jacob Zuma lays a wreath at the prison cell at Kgosi Mapuru II Correctional Service Centre where liberation struggle hero Steve Bantu Biko died on 12 September 1977. Picture: GCIS

The President commemorated the 40th anniversary of Biko’s murder on Tuesday by laying a wreath in his cell at the Kgosi Mampuru Correctional Centre.

Biko died at the then Pretoria Central Prison from injuries sustained while in police custody.

President Zuma used an analogy likening himself to Biko.

“We are still there some of us, hated as he was hated. At least he was hated and killed – it’s better with us we’re still hated and with words.”

The President seemed to suggest that he’s made peace with this hatred.

“But it is there; it is what we receive always from where we are, and so we’re not ashamed.”

The President told his supporters at his 75th birthday party earlier this year that he is used to being criticized and being called names, saying it doesn’t worry him anymore.