Tuesday, 3 September 2019

ZHRO Weekly Vigil 28 August 2019


ZHRO Vigil 28 August 2019

Reuniting Trade and Human Rights in Zimbabwe

The planned ZHRO weekly Vigil protest on the 28th August 2019, started rather slowly.  The mood at the Vigil was one of haplessness until word broke that there might be a Trade Mission from Zimbabwe to the UK which could include Mthuli Ncube.  Mtuli Ncube is the Zimbabwe Finance Minister.  Despite an Oxford University education and various jobs in finance, he actually inherited an economy that had less than 4% inflation before the fall of Mugabe, then within 24 months managed to catastrophically fail to run the economy.  It went from just ticking along, to over 500% inflation. 

The pure recklessness of this man has led to most of the Demonstrations in Zimbabwe this year.  It has been reported that he has a surplus, yet, the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) is having to load shed electricity and thus leading to 18 hour power outages per day.  The Hospitals are so underfunded, bandages are washed, hung out to dry and re-used.  Incubators are left off for those 18 hrs of load shedding as the hospitals do not have the money to buy fuel for their generators. 

War Veterans, who are mostly pensioners now, are being forced to live on less than £0.50 (Fifty pence) per day.  Teachers earn less than £50 (Fifty Great British pounds ) per month.  Civil servants are constantly threatening strikes as their salaries have been so eroded by the apparent structural adjustment programs, they sleep at work, to avoid paying daily fares to travel to and from work.  All this is being done by a man who in a recent video did not even know the price of bread within his own economy.

The same man has not uttered a word publicly, to condemn the brutality that the people of Zimbabwe are facing at the hands of the police and proxies of the Government he represents.  Even old ladies have not been spared, during brutal crackdowns.

When the announcement came of the possibility of Mtuli Ncube traveling to the UK, the Vigil attendees did not even need to be asked whether or not to protest on the day.  All were so eager, plans were already afoot by the ZHRO London Chair to change the Wednesday vigil from Wednesday 4th to Monday the 2nd of September 2019.  “We will meet at Amba hotel” he said.  “Please be on time he asked.” 

Special thanks go to the following, Molly Ngavaimbe who gave us the opening prayer.  The singing and chanting which was shared mostly by, Mary Mateyerwa and Rashiwe Bayisayi.  Thanks to Philip Mahlahla for the photos.  Tryness Ncube brought many treats that reminded everyone of home which included, Chibage, Muriwo and cookies.  All these treats were not for sale and were enjoyed by all presnt.  Thank you to Sarah and Rashiwe Bayisayi who brought the tables, banners and tent, all the way from the South Coast to London, which they have been doing week in, week out.  They also brought tea, coffee, and some more cookies, which were shared and enjoyed by all.

Kingstone Jambawo gave some advise on the upcoming ZHRO anual meeting.  

Those who attended as per the official ZHRO Vigil Register were Mary Muteyerwa, Thulani Nyemba, Molly Ngavaimbe, Tapiwa Muskwe, Stella Mandiranga, Chegika Lifa Phiri, Rashiwe Bayisayi, Thabo Makuyana, Nehemiah Musonza, Tryness Ncube, Philip Mahlahla and Kingstone Jambawo.  Sarah bayisayi attended the Vigil but did not sign the register.  Chinaza John-Okoh from Nigeria attended as a guest.  She came with Stella Mandiranga.

Other news includes the following
:- The Herald, Zimbabwe’s leading print News paper has showed discontent with the USA Ambassador to Zimbabwe for amongst other things advocating for Human Rights.
:- Zim Live.com, has reported that the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe has called on President Emmerson Mnangagwa to speed up reforms in Zimbabwe and advance democratic reforms in a brief meeting in Japan on Friday.
:- @TimoOlkkonen E.U. Ambassador has tweeted, “We have supported the Government’s reform agenda, although we would have loved it to move faster.  However, with constant reports about human rights violations, it can not be business as usual from an EU perspective!”

To find out more, join ZHRO, attend one the weekly protest vigils or other events and to offer your support please contact.

Kingstone Jambawo                        079 048 61744
Sarah Bayisayi                                 078 772 87869
Phillip Mahlahla                              074 528 28229

By Thabo Makuyana

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