Category Archives: Headlines

President to launch Masvingo highway dualisation project

President Mugabe

President Mugabe

George Maponga in Masvingo—
President Mugabe is expected to officially launch the $1 billion Beitbridge-Harare and Harare-Chirundu highways dualisation project tomorrow, in a development likely to reduce carnage along one of Zimbabwe’s busiest roads. The road will also boost trade on the continent, as well as unlock value for the country.

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The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces will commission the official start of the dualisation project at a ground-breaking ceremony that will be held along the highway at Chaka business centre in Chirumhanzu.

Geiger International of Austria was contracted by Government to dualise the highway under a 25-year Build Operate and Transfer model.

Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Dr Joram Gumbo yesterday confirmed that President Mugabe would officially launch the dualisation project tomorrow.

He said the project would be done in phases, with the one being launched tomorrow involving dualisation of the Beitbridge-Harare Highway.

“It will be a big day because the dualisation of the Harare-Beitbridge Highway was long overdue after having been delayed by battles, that at one, time spilled into the courts,’’ said Dr Gumbo.

“The project will cost just under a billion at about $998 million and the contractor will tell the President the time lines for completing the project and the President will also say something during the official launch of the project.’’

Dr Gumbo said preliminary indications were that the project was going to be completed within three years, with work expected to resume once President Mugabe officially launched it.

“The dualisation project will be done in phases and under the first phase being launched by His Excellency at Chaka, the dualisation will be done from Beitbridge to Harare only and as for the Harare-Chirundu stretch, the nation will be notified at the appropriate time,’’ he said.

Dr Gumbo said the dualisation project would bring economic benefits to Zimbabwe and other countries in the region.

“We are happy that the dualisation will finally start and though it may not totally end road accidents along the highway, we believe for those drivers who are careful, the number of accidents will go down,’’ he said.

Government has already insisted that 40 percent of the dualisation project was supposed to benefit locals as part of empowering indigenous people.

Calls for Government to expedite the dualisation project got louder last month after 30 people perished at Nyamatikiti River Bridge near Chaka when a Proliner bus bound for South Africa was side-swiped by a haulage truck going in the opposite direction.

King Letsie III engages President

President Mugabe, First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe and King Letsie III of Lesotho toast during a banquet at State House in Harare on Monday. — (Picture by Innocent Makawa)

President Mugabe, First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe and King Letsie III of Lesotho toast during a banquet at State House in Harare on Monday. — (Picture by Innocent Makawa)

Elita chikwati Senior Reporter—
President Mugabe yesterday met King Letsie III of Lesotho at State House, where they held high-level talks on various issues to enhance bilateral cooperation and cordial relations between the two countries. The meeting, which was part of King Letsie III’s four-day State visit, lasted for more than two hours. Though details of the meeting could not be obtained, King Letsie III indicated on Monday that he intended to thank President Mugabe for his wise leadership which helped stabilise the political situation in his country and the region.

Before the meeting, King Letsie III had visited the National Heroes Acre in the company of Foreign Affairs Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi and laid a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

He also visited Lion and Cheetah Park, where he enjoyed a game drive before proceeding to the National Museum and Monuments.

At the National Heroes Acre, King Letsie III was taken on a tour of the shrine by resident curator, Ms Rumbidzai Bvira, who chronicled the history of Zimbabwe from colonialism to independence as depicted on two murals standing on the sides of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

King Letsie III was shown the tomb of the first chairman of zanu-pf’s Dare ReChimurenga, Cde Herbert Hamandishe Chitepo and other liberation icons like the late Vice President Joshua Nkomo, who was popularly known as Father Zimbabwe.

He also visited the graves of the first Heroine Cde Sally Mugabe and Cde Arthur Guy Clutton, whom Ms Bvira described as a critical figure in the liberation struggle.

King Letsie III said the National Heroes Acre was a great monument.

“This is a great monument that the people of Zimbabwe, through the wisdom of their leadership and their wisdom, have decided to put up and create to celebrate and remember the struggles that they have gone through to achieve the independence and liberation that they now enjoy today,” he said.

“I hope this monument will continue to be an inspiration for current Zimbabweans and for future generations, not only for Zimbabwe, but for other people of the region and continent as a whole. I am glad to have the opportunity to visit for myself this historic monument.”

At the Lion and Cheetah Park, King Letsie III enjoyed a game drive, viewing different animals including lions, duiker and impala.

At the National Museum and Monuments, he was taken around by senior curators Messrs Happiness Marufu and Farai Chabata.

The duo took King Letsie through Stone age tools, the Great Zimbabwe tradition, traditional musical instruments, ancient mining and the set up of traditional homes.

Today, King Letsie III is expected to visit Victoria Falls and the Crocodile Farm, both in Matabeleland North Province.

Zimbabwe and Lesotho enjoy cordial relations dating back to the days of the liberation struggle.

Lesotho extended crucial assistance to Zimbabwe during the liberation struggle, which saw eminent political figures receiving education in that country.

President Mugabe played a crucial role in bringing peace and stability to Lesotho when he pre-occupied himself with solving the political turmoil in the mountainous country during his time as the Sadc chairperson.

Zimbabwe and Lesotho are bound together by a common history, similar cultures and strong economic linkages.

Mathuthu takes over Moyo’s post

Thokozile Mathuthu

Thokozile Mathuthu

Walter Nyamukondiwa in MUTORASHANGA—
Zanu-PF Politburo member Cde Thokozile Mathuthu has been elevated to the post of deputy secretary for the Zanu-PF Women’s League, replacing Cde Nomthandazo Sandi Moyo, who resigned recently following allegations of misconduct and criminal abuse of office. Cde Moyo resigned together with secretary for Finance in the league, Cde Sarah Mahoka, who faced similar allegations. They have both denied the allegations.

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Party supporters from the 10 provinces staged demonstrations in March calling for the two to be relieved of their duties, forcing them to resign.

Cde Mathuthu, who is the Deputy Minister of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services, was secretary for information and publicity in the organ prior to her elevation.

Secretary for Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Mr George Charamba revealed Cde Mathuthu’s latest appointment at the burial of his wife, Mrs Idaishe Olivia Chengu-Charamba here yesterday.

“Minister Christopher Mushohwe could not be with us here today because of commitments outside the country,” he said.

“He has shared with us the grief that we have. He has, however, sent his deputy and Politburo member Cde Mathuthu, who is also the new deputy to First Lady Dr Grace Mugabe in the Women’s League. It’s still a new position that has not even been celebrated.”

Cde Judith Ncube replaces Cde Mathuthu as secretary for information and publicity in the Women’s League.
Her elevation was also acknowledged by party secretary for Administration Dr Ignatius Chombo during introductions at the burial of Cde Charamba’s wife.

Cde Moyo was accused of abusing funds sourced in the name of the party, insubordination to First Lady Dr Mugabe and causing divisions in the organ.

The party has since demanded that Cdes Moyo and Mahoka return the funds they reportedly solicited in the name of the Women’s League.

They have reverted to being ordinary card carrying members since resignation. Cde Moyo has retained her position in Government where she is the Bulawayo Provincial Affairs Minister.

Cde Mahoka also retained her position as Hurungwe East legislator.

Cde Mahoka was also accused of denigrating Vice President Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa at a rally held at the party headquarters last year.

The burial of Cde Charamba’s wife was attended by several senior Government and Zanu-PF officials, journalists from various media houses, friends and relatives.

Politburo meeting postponed

Felex Share Senior Reporter

The Zanu-PF Politburo meeting which was scheduled for tomorrow at the party’s headquarters has been postponed.

The meeting was expected to seal the fate of the party’s national commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere.

The revolutionary party’s secretary for administration Cde Ignatius Chombo confirmed the development today.

“The meeting has been postponed and all Politburo members are being advised of the development,” he said, without stating reasons.

“We will let you know of the new date but for now there is nothing.”

Indications are that President Mugabe, who is the Zanu-PF First Secretary, has a busy schedule this week which includes hosting King Letsie 111 of Lesotho.

The Lesotho leader arrived in the country for a four day State visit which ends Thursday.

Thokozile Mathuthu promoted

mathuthuthoksTendai Mugabe in Mutorashanga

Cde Thokozile Mathuthu is the new Zanu-PF Women’s League deputy secretary, taking over from the deposed Eunice Nomthandazo Moyo.

Zanu-PF secretary for administration Dr Ignitius Chombo made the announcement at the burial of the wife of the Secretary for Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Mr George Charamba, Olivia Charamba, in Mutorashanga today.

Cde Mathuthu, who is Deputy Minister of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services, was the wing’s secretary for information and publicity.

Provincial chairpersons snub Kasukuwere

Cde Kasukuwere

Cde Kasukuwere

Farirai Machivenyika Senior Reporter
THE majority of Zanu-PF provincial chairpersons yesterday snubbed a meeting called by the ruling party’s under fire political commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere at the party headquarters in Harare.

The meeting was held despite concerns by some chairpersons that Cde Kasukuwere should not be addressing such meetings until he is cleared on charges that have seen votes of no confidence being passed against him by the party’s structures countrywide.

He is accused of creating parallel structures to remove President Mugabe from power, corruption and fanning factionalism.

According to sources, yesterday’s meeting was attended by four provincial chairpersons and these were Cde Dickson Mafios of Mashonaland Central, Harare’s Cde Charles Tawengwa, Bulawayo provincial chairperson Cde Dennis Ndlovu and Mashonaland East’s chairman Cde Bernard Makokove.

Masvingo’s suspended political commissar Cde Jappy Jaboon, viewed in the province as Cde Kasukuwere’s side-kick, was said to have been in the meeting.

The party’s provincial chairpersons who snubbed the meeting were Masvingo’s Cde Ezra Chadzamira, Cde Ephraim Chengeta (Mashonaland West), Cde Daniel Mackenzie Ncube (Midlands), Matabeleland South’s Cde Rabelani Choeni, Matabeleland North’s Cde Richard Moyo and Cde Samuel Undenge (Manicaland).

One of the chairpersons that attended the meeting yesterday said their actions should not be misconstrued as support for the embattled Cde Kasukuwere.

“We attended the meeting because we realised that party programmes should continue,” said the chairperson who did not want his name to be used. “It should, however, not be viewed as support for Kasukuwere.”

Cde Makokove confirmed attending the meeting.

“Yes, the meeting was held, but I can’t discuss with you what we discussed,” he said.

Cde Chengeta promised to comment late yesterday, but was no longer reachable in the evening, while Cdes Moyo, Undenge, Ncube and Choeni were not reachable last night. Cdes Tawengwa and Mafios could not be reached for comment as their cell phones went unanswered.

Contacted for comment, Cde Kasukuwere said he was happy with the attendance at the meeting.

“We were discussing the restructuring of the party from the cells, the branches, because soon there will be a roll out of the voter registration programme and we have to be ready,” he said.

Cde Kasukuwere accused The Herald of working against him as the political commissar of the ruling party.

“Why are you working to destroy the party?” he said. “You should not be involved in our issues, but leave us as politicians to settle them on our own.”

President Mugabe appointed a team led by Speaker of the National Assembly and Politburo member Cde Jacob Mudenda to investigate events leading to Cde Kasukuwere receiving votes of no confidence from all the party’s 10 provinces.

The team went to Mashonaland Central, Cde Kasukuwere’s home province which kick-started the process of passing the votes of no confidence. The team was expected to submit its report to President Mugabe for further discussion by the Politburo and possible forwarding to the party’s discplinary committee.

Party supporters in Mashonaland Central held demonstrations against Cde Kasukuwere, but the President intervened to stop other provinces from following the same course, saying members should follow laid down channels to air grievances to the party.

Stop order facility for Command Agric beneficiaries

Dr Made

Dr Made

Elita Chikwati Senior Agriculture Reporter
Government has urged farmers and institutions that grew maize under the special maize import substitution programme (Command Agriculture) to register for a stop order facility with the Grain Marketing Board (GMB).

Those caught side-marketing their produce will be blocked from participating in similar programmes.

The stop order system seeks to facilitate deductions for inputs that the beneficiaries received during the 2015-16 cropping season.

Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister Dr Joseph Made urged the technical team in the ministry preparing the quantum taken by Command Agriculture beneficiaries to keep up its work so that GMB was able to double check the amount of inputs received by every beneficiary, including institutions.

“This will be the same situation as we go into the winter crop,” he said.

“Government will take measures against any farmers who do not comply.”

Dr Made urged GMB to move with speed when assisting millers purchasing grain from the parastatal to avoid challenges in the milling industry.

“GMB should not delay in loading grain for specific millers who signed an agreement with the parastatal,” he said. “There should not be unnecessary delays in meeting the legal obligations to the millers.”

Farmers have started harvesting maize produced under Command Agriculture, with others already delivering the maize to the GMB.

Beneficiaries of the programme are expected to deliver five tonnes per hectare to the GMB.

Zimbabwe is expecting a bumper harvest of 2,7 million tonnes of cereals of which 2,1 million tonnes are expected to come from maize, while the remaining 600 000 tonnes will come from small grains such as pearl millet, finger millet, rapoko and sorghum.

The Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe will buy 800 000 tonnes of grain from GMB and has already availed $8 million, which will be used to rehabilitate storage facilities.

GMB has 85 depots across the country and has established 1 882 collection points countrywide to enable farmers to reduce transport costs when delivering their grain.

The parastatal has also started moving empty grain bags to depots and farmers would start collecting when all modalities have been put in place.

Farmers will buy the grain bags at 60 cents each through stop order.

Those who deliver the grain using the GMB bags will be refunded 40 cents per bag, which means they buy at 20 cents per bag.

Deputy Chief Secretary and Chairman of the Integrated Command Agriculture, Mr Justin Mupamhanga, yesterday advised participating farmers that the maize marketing season had started.

He said farmers contracted under Command Agriculture were expected to deliver maize to the Grain Marketing Board (GMB).

They are supposed to carry with them a completed and signed stop order form to facilitate cost recovery and early payment of grain delivered.

The farmers should collect their stop order form from AGRITEX district offices.

Mr Mupamhanga warned the farmers against side marketing of maize contracted under the Command Agriculture and those caught will be blacklisted.

Command Agriculture activities remain voluntary in both ways, from the Government perspective and individual farmers.

Farmers should put in place fireguards to protect their maize from veld fires and are supposed to protect their crops against post harvest losses.

King Letsie III pays debt of gratitude • Hails President Mugabe’s leadership • Thanks Zimbabwe for solving instability in Lesotho

President Mugabe welcomes King Letsie III of Lesotho at Harare International Airport. The king is in Zimbabwe on a four-day State visit

President Mugabe welcomes King Letsie III of Lesotho at Harare International Airport. The king is in Zimbabwe on a four-day State visit

Fidelis Munyoro Chief Court Reporter
King Letsie III of the Kingdom of Lesotho has hailed President Mugabe’s wise guidance and astute leadership that brought normalcy to his country when it was facing political instability that spanned over three decades.

King Letsie III was speaking during a banquet hosted in his honour by President Mugabe at State House last night.

He is here on a four-day State visit.

King Letsie III said he had come to Zimbabwe to thank President Mugabe for the role he played for Lesotho to enjoy peace and tranquillity.

“I came here to Zimbabwe to deliver just one message to you Your Excellency and the people of Zimbabwe and that message I deliver it on behalf of Basuthu and on behalf of my family, is one of gratitude,” said King Letsie III.

He said he had been facing many political challenges in the last four decades and he first assumed office in 1990 under very abnormal and unpleasant circumstances.

He said the situation, which prevailed up to mid-90s, created a lot of tension and instability in the mountainous country and even threatened to bring permanent instability to the institutions of the Monarchy.

“Your guidance and leadership in bringing back normalcy, stability and legitimacy to the monarchy and other institutions will never be forgotten by our people,” said King Letsie III.

“Even since such time as Lesotho and Basuthu, we have struggled to solidify and strengthen our democracy. You and other leaders in the region have continued to provide guidance and support either directly or through our regional body, Sadc.

“For all this as Basuthu, we can only say thank you. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We must also thank the people of Zimbabwe who have enabled you to play a pivotal role in our country’s political development.”

Earlier on at the banquet, President Mugabe said Zimbabwe remained committed to working with Lesotho and other Sadc member States in promoting peace and security in the region.

“We are also committed to working towards enhancing regional integration, continental unity, as well as in advancing our common causes on the international platform,” said President Mugabe.

“In the world wrecked by poverty, hunger and disease, and infected by wars, some of which are instigated by the greed of the powerful, Africa’s voice of conscience must be heard.”

President Mugabe said he was aware that in less than a month Lesotho would be holding elections to choose parliamentarians and expressed confidence that the polls would be conduct within the precincts of peace and harmony.

“We are confident that, as they have done in the past, they will exercise their democratic right in a peaceful manner,” he said. “In this, Zimbabwe, together with the rest of Sadc family, will support and cheer you.”

Zimbabwe and Lesotho share common views on several other international, continental and regional issues and the two countries’ relations date back from the days of their struggle for independence.

Honour thy mother . . . Nation joins world in celebrating Mother’s Day

Women’s University in Africa Vice Chancellor Professor Hope Sadza (seated left) and other women get a feel of chemotherapy chairs during Mother’s Day commemorations at OnCore Care in Newlands, Harare, yesterday. — Picture by Tawanda Mudimu

Women’s University in Africa Vice Chancellor Professor Hope Sadza (seated left) and other women get a feel of chemotherapy chairs during Mother’s Day commemorations at OnCore Care in Newlands, Harare, yesterday. — Picture by Tawanda Mudimu

Tendai Rupapa Senior Reporter
Zimbabweans yesterday joined the rest of the world in celebrating Mother’s Day, a day when motherhood is honoured.

Mother’s Day is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in the months of March and May.

It was pomp and fanfare in the city, with gifts of all shapes and sizes exchanging hands as children honoured their mothers for the role they play in bringing them into the world.

Some families organised outings for all of their members, having special meals in restaurants.

“No one can replace my mom,” said Mrs Blessing Murwisi-Nyemba. “She is my best friend, an amazing woman and I thank her for always believing in me and supporting my dreams.”

Mrs Monalisa Denhere took her mother for a special lunch at a local restaurant and showered her with praises, describing her as her role model.

“She is based in America, but this won’t stop me from doing something special for her,” she said. “VaNhewa (totem) is my source of inspiration and she is all I can live up to. For me to be where I am today and to be what I am, it is because of my mother. I love her so dearly.”

Another parent, Ruvimbo Chigumbura, was ecstatic when her five-year-old son Garvin, who is in pre-school, prepared a handmade card for her inscribed “Thank you mummy and I love you”.

Many men also gave their wives a treat, appreciating their roles in society.

“My mother is late, therefore, I am dedicating this day to my beautiful wife,” Mr Nicholas Chigwiko said. “I bought her several gifts and will definitely take her out for dinner at a quiet place and her mother, will join us for the dinner.”

Others gave thanks to their grandmothers and aunts who raised them following the deaths of their mothers, describing them as super women.

Some, whose mothers departed mother earth, took time to celebrate their lives, convening family gatherings where they took time to pray and party.

At the United Family International Church, the church’s leader Emmanuel Makandiwa dedicated the morning service sermon to mothers.

He described mothers and wives as special beings, who should be honoured in a special way.

Makandiwa implored men to always take contributions by their wives seriously, giving an example of his own wife, whom he said was far ahead of him in handling family matters.

He said his wife was the pillar of the church in terms of her good organisational capacity and without her he would have failed to make it.

Makandiwa then led the congregants in prayer for their mothers and wives.

Mothers play a very crucial role in keeping the social fabric intact as they are the vanguard of families, particularly that they are the first teachers of children in their families and instilling discipline.

Recuse yourself, Kasukuwere told

Cde Kasukuwere

Cde Kasukuwere

Herald Reporters
Zanu-PF political commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere should not attend meetings called by the Department of the Commissariat with provincial chairpersons to avoid disrupting programmes in provinces that rejected him, the revolutionary party’s provincial leaders said yesterday.

Their comments were triggered by reports that the Department of the Commissariat had called for a meeting with provincial chairpersons today in Harare which Cde Kasukuwere was billed to address.

Some chairpersons who spoke to The Herald on condition of anonymity for fear of victimisation said the party’s Commissariat Department was not supposed to stop functioning, calling for Cde Kasukuwere to recuse himself from meetings until his case is dealt with by the Politburo.

They said calling for such meetings by Cde Kasukuwere was tantamount to bullying provincial chairpersons, a situation they claimed was “disastrous”.

“We hear the meeting has been called by the Department of the Commissariat in Harare, not by Cde Kasukuwere. However, if it is true that Cde Kasukuwere wants to address us, then it will be disastrous,” said one of the chair- persons.

Weighed in another one: “We cannot be addressed by the person the people have rejected. The Department of the Commissariat should not stop functioning because of him. I am coming to Harare and if he is indeed going to address us, I will boycott the meeting.”

Cde Kasukuwere has been rejected by all the revolutionary party’s 10 provinces that joined his home province Mashonaland Central that accused him of an array of allegations, among them creating parallel structures to remove President Mugabe from power, corruption and fanning factionalism.

Cde Kasukuwere could not be reached on his phone yesterday.

Deputy national political commissar Cde Omega Hungwe professed ignorance about today’s meeting, raising suspicion that Cde Kasukuwere wanted to go it alone.

“I have not been told about such a meeting tomorrow (today),” she said. “If the provinces are saying it was organised by the Commissariat Department, then the PC (Cde Kasukuwere) could have spoken with the office.”

Matabeleland South provincial spokesperson Cde Rabelani Choeni said although he was yet to receive the invitation, he had some commitments in the province.

“I have not been given the invitation yet,” he said. “I do not think I will be attending the meeting because I will be meeting visitors in Gwanda tomorrow (today).”

Said Bulawayo chairman Cde Dennis Ndlovu: “We hear there is a meeting in Harare. I am not sure if I am going to attend.”

Mashonaland West provincial chairman Cde Ephraim Chengeta, who earlier on said he would comment after an inter-district meeting in Karoi, was not responding to his phone late yesterday night.

Harare acting chairman Cde Charles Tavengwa and Mashonaland Central chairperson Cde Dickson Mafios’ phones went unanswered yesterday.

Mashonaland East provincial chair Cde Bernard Makokove said he was not aware of today’s meeting.

“I have not received any information about that meeting,” he said before he terminated the interview.

Midlands provincial chairman Cde Daniel Mackenzie Ncube said: “We have not been informed about that meeting. Even if the communication is going to come I will not be able to attend because I have another programme that I have to attend at Chaka Business Centre.”

Although Manicaland acting provincial chairman Dr Samuel Undenge could not be reached for comment, provincial secretary for administration Cde Kenneth Saruchera said: “All the information relating to such meetings comes through our office, but as of now we have no such communication.”

In Matabeleland North, provincial chairman Cde Richard Moyo said: “Yes, we have been advised of that meeting and we are going to attend. We have presented our issues against Cde Kasukuwere and we are waiting for the outcome of the Politburo, but we are going to attend this meeting to hear what they have called us for.”

Asked to comment on the legal status of Cde Kasukuwere to call for such a meeting given his rejection by the provinces, Zanu-PF Secretary for Administration Cde Ignatius Chombo said only the national political commissar was mandated to talk about his meetings.

“Ask the person who is calling for the meeting all those questions,” he said. “I know about my meetings. No one should ask why I am calling a meeting.”

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