April 26th 2008


  Buy Issue 2778
Qty:

Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: Too terrible to contemplate

EDITORIAL: Torch relay highlights Beijing's human rights record

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Could Costello unite demoralised Liberals?

MANUFACTURING: Car-making could be our flagship industry

NEW ZEALAND: NZ Kiwibank now has 600,000 customers

WATER: Federal water policy will add to world food shortage

ECONOMIC AFFAIRS: Reaping the whirlwind of financial deregulation

PROFILE: Other side of Australia's next Governor-General

STRAWS IN THE WIND: Life is a cabaret / Nepal / Bitter fruits / Russia and China / Swan song? / The skaters' waltz / Rice / Ingrid Betancourt

ASIA: Middle power status for Australia: mind over rhetoric

AFRICA: World stands by as Mugabe inflicts terror in Zimbabwe

FAMILY LAW: Paternity fraud punishes the blameless

SCHOOLS: What must be done to lift standards?

INTERNET FILTERING: Porn industry opposes Conroy's ISP-filter plan

OPINION: Economic policy should serve national interest

BOOKS: LIBERAL FASCISM: The secret history of the American left, from Mussolini to the politics of meaning

BOOKS: EMBRYO: A Defense of Human Life by Robert P. George and Christopher Tollefsen

Books promotion page

survey link

FONT SIZE:

AFRICA:
World stands by as Mugabe inflicts terror in Zimbabwe


by Peter Westmore

News Weekly, April 26, 2008
Zimbabwe's political opposition has been desperately trying to enlist international support against Mugabe, writes Peter Westmore.

Robert Mugabe, the president of Zimbabwe who was defeated in a popular election on March 29, but prevented the release of the official results, has embarked on a widespread campaign of terror in rural Zimbabwe to intimidate people into supporting him in a second round of presidential elections.

Under Mugabe's rule, Zimbabwe has been turned into a police state. The economy, once one of the most prosperous in Africa, has been destroyed, with inflation at 100,000 per cent, and opposition leaders bashed, imprisoned or killed.

Western journalists who were in the country for the March 29 election, and international observers, confirmed that after the March election there was widespread rejoicing that the 84-year-old Mugabe had been defeated.

However, Mugabe's henchmen refused to release the results, despite efforts by the opposition Movement for Democratic Change to get a Supreme Court order forcing the release of the results. In the meantime Mugabe's party, ZANU-PF, claimed that there had been "irregulars" in the count, and five electoral officials were sacked and imprisoned for allegedly supporting the opposition.

ZANU-PF is apparently "adjusting" the results to show that opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai did not get an absolute majority, and will have to contest a run-off poll against Mugabe.

In the meantime, the independent British weekly, the Guardian, has reported that Mugabe "has unleashed his shock troops, Zanu-PF's militias and those who call themselves liberation-war veterans, even though most are too young to have fought it, in an undeclared campaign of terror against rural voters in advance of an expected second round of presidential elections".

It added: "The violence and intimidation that helped deliver perverted election victories to Zanu-PF three and six years ago were absent from the presidential and parliamentary ballot on March 29, and Mugabe lost. Now they are returning with a vengeance and the ruling party is using results from the first round as a guide to where to exert pressure." (The Guardian, April 10, 2008).

Opposition activists believe that these tactics — which include murder, beatings and burning houses of known opposition supporters — will succeed. People in rural areas, where most of the population lives, are powerless to withstand the pressure.

In the meantime, the leader of the Movement for Democratic Change, Morgan Tsvangirai, has been desperately trying to enlist international support against Mugabe.

A key participant is South Africa, which adjoins Zimbabwe, and is now host to over a million refugees who have fled violence and starvation in their home country.

However, the South African president, Thabo Mbeki, has declined to act, although South Africa did intervene some years ago in Lesotho, in somewhat similar circumstances.

The South African president was the chief mediator between Zimbabwe's governing ZANU-PF party and Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change in the run-up to the March election, permitting the presence of international observers and enacting election regulations which required that the election count was conducted in each polling place, and posted outside after voting had concluded.

It was the collation of these results which enabled the opposition to declare victory in both the parliamentary and presidential polls.

However, a week after the elections were held, Mbeki counselled "patience", urging the opposition to accept the "official" results (although they had not been released), while ignoring opposition calls for the international community to intervene.

The South African leader made no public call for the release of the results, which independent observers say were available the day after the vote.

In desperation, Morgan Tsvangirai then approached the president of the African National Congress in South Africa, Jacob Zuma, for assistance.

Zuma is a highly controversial figure in South Africa, having served as a prisoner on Robbin Island with Nelson Mandela and other ANC leaders during the apartheid period.

Zuma, a Zulu, was deputy president of South Africa until June 2005, when President Mbeki forced him to resign over a corruption scandal. The scandal involved a multi-billion dollar purchase of weaponry in 1999.

Rackeeteering

Jacob Zuma was charged in December 2007 with racketeering, money-laundering, corruption and fraud over the purchase of frigates for the South African navy, a proposed waterfront development in Durban, and lavish spending on Zuma's home.

The trial is set to proceed next August. If Zuma were to be convicted and sentenced to a term of imprisonment of more than one year, he would be ineligible to be elected president of South Africa.

He was also charged with rape of the 31-year-old daughter of a prominent ANC member in 2005, but was found not guilty.

The Zimbabwe opposition leader is in a poor position to have to rely on either Thabo Mbeki or Jacob Zuma.

— Peter Westmore.




























Join email list

Join e-newsletter list


Your cart has 0 items



Subscribe to NewsWeekly

Research Papers



Trending articles

NATIONAL AFFAIRS Cardinal rebuts commission's 'Get Pell' campaign

COVER STORY Anti-discrimination law validates Safe Schools

U.S. AFFAIRS First Brexit, now Trump: it's the economy, stupid!

INDUSTRY AND ENVIRONMENT Wikileaks reveals U.S, funding behind anti-coal campaign

COVER STORY QUT discrimination case exposes Human Rights Commission failings

FOREIGN AFFAIRS How the left whitewashed Fidel Castro

ANALYSIS What is possible to a Trump Whitehouse



News and views from around the world

19-year-old homeschooled pro-lifer wins Ontario election by landslide (Lianne Laurence)

Trump makes right choice for education secretary (National Review)

Transgender conformity (Katherine Kersten)

Sex education programs do not reduce teen pregnancy or STI rates (Philippa Taylor)

Photographer who captured Safe Schools founder harassing bystander shuts down business (Frank Chung)

Is the global middle class here to stay? (Samuel Rines)

Donald Trump could end America's new feudalism (Joel Kotkin)

It just got easier to find the perpetrators of Stalin's purges (David Filipov)

Castro's death eradicate bacillus of old-style Marxism (Gerald Warner)

Labor MP Terri Butler in QUT race case apology (Geoff Chambers)



























© Copyright NewsWeekly.com.au 2011
Last Modified:
December 2, 2016, 2:36 pm