Source blog: The Bearded Man


My good lady has called the doctor out today. She has been bitten by something (probably whilst we were camping) and now has loads of sports on her legs, back, shoulders and arms. There is even one on her face. These are extremely itchy and she struggles to control the want to scratch.

The spots are not individual bites or stings, but rather a reaction to the original bite.

We have read that my wife was not the only one that was camping that has suffered this way.

On an entirely different note, twelve years ago today I had the accident that left me disabled with a badly injured left forearm. The company I was working for failed to call for an ambulance or make an entry into the Accident Book, and turned their backs on me when I instituted a legal case against them.

All I wanted was to be put on BUPA to speed up the recovery times, but they protected themselves by just closing ranks.

It is a well known company, but I will not name and shame as I am aware of the threat of legal action against me. It is an 'us versus them' scenario, where 'them' is a rather large multinational company who wouldn't think anything of crushing me like a fly.


What really irks me with this, is that Zuma has allowed the draft constitution to be used as an excuse to delay the negotiations between the parties.

How is it that Mugabe is unable to accept defeat in the 2008 election, and how is it that the loser is permitted to carry on as if they won that election, making the winner march to a ZANU PF drum beat?

Party negotiators to the GPA have been using the excuse of being too busy with the drafting of a new constitution to find time to be introduced to the SADC Troika team deployed to assist the inclusive government.

But now that the draft is out, that excuse can no longer be used.

The two members in the SADC team are Ambassador David Katye from Tanzania and Colly Muunyu, a diplomat from Zambia. They are expected to work with negotiators and the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee (JOMIC) to fully implement the GPA.

The SADC team first flew into Harare in June but were not formally introduced to JOMIC members because of their constitutional work.

Elton Mangoma, the Energy Minister from the MDC-T, told SW Radio Africa on Wednesday: ‘We have failed to meet as JOMIC but we have penciled a meeting for next week and hope to see or hear from the SADC team.’

Initially the SADC technical committee was to comprise of three members (from South Africa, Zambia and Tanzania). But South Africa opted not to appoint a member, saying they had a three member facilitation team already actively involved in Zimbabwe.

The decision to appoint the team was first mooted at a SADC summit in
Livingstone, Zambia in March 2011. SADC said the team would help speed up implementation of the GPA. This was after the regional leaders criticized
the unity government for its slow progress.

ZANU PF has been resisting the deployment of the team to Zimbabwe, using the well worn excuse that secondment of foreigners into JOMIC infringes on the country’s sovereignty.

JOMIC, the offspring of the country’s inclusive process, was tasked with monitoring and documenting violations of the GPA, which gave birth to the current inclusive government. But the group, which comprises politicians from the three political parties in the coalition government, has been dismissed as ineffective since it does not have any legal instrument to give it teeth.

Zuma is the wrong man for the job, of that we can be certain. That Zuma bows to Mugabe’s ideologies we have no doubt, but when the choice of the Zimbabwean people is subverted so openly and without fear is unforgivable.


Mugabe and his brigands will use whatever means they can to win any election. If that means using fictitious voters, or deceased persons, then that is what they will do.

And ZANU PF are happy to hide behind a ‘security issue’ to get their own way.

I would have thought that one way to negate vote rigging of this nature would be to conduct a national census – but a) we have got no time, and b) we have got no money is the age old excuses used.

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and most political parties still do not have access to the master voters’ roll, while the majority of the electorate is ignorant about how to register or check their details in preparation for polls.

Analysts say this flies in the face of the roadmap to free and fair elections as major stakeholders in future polls lack the requisite knowledge, cannot plan properly and run the danger of being excluded. It also provides opportunities for large scale rigging.

Investigations by The Zimbabwean revealed that ZEC is yet to be given the electronic and hard copy voters roll by Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede, who has presided over national polls for more than 20 years and is accused of favouring Zanu (PF).

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission Act (Chapter 2.12) prescribes that ZEC should delimit constituency boundaries, prepare for and conduct elections and direct and control voter registration.

The body also has the mandate to compile voters’ rolls and conduct voter education, in addition to ensuring that elections are held freely, fairly and transparently. But analysts say this is impossible given that the commission does not have access to the voters’ roll.

‘‘The voters’ roll is very difficult to access even though it is supposed to be a public document. This is suicidal,’’ Tawanda Chimhini, the Election Resource Centre Director told The Zimbabwean.

‘‘ZEC is treading in the dark. There is need for transparency,’’ he added.
In the absence of a comment from Douglas Mwonzora, the MDC-T National Spokesperson, a Harvest House official who declined to be named said his party did not have the roll, while Dumiso Dabengwa, the Zapu Interim President, also confirmed that his party was operating in the dark.

‘‘We have been hunting for the roll for a long time. Mudede should explain why he is denying us access to the document. We will be meeting with ZEC soon and we are going to raise that concern,’’ said Dabengwa.

Rugare Gumbo, the Zanu (PF) Secretary for Information and Publicity, also claimed they did not have the roll, but analysts say this is highly unlikely as Mudede is their man.

‘‘We also don’t have the voters’ roll. However, we know where to get it when we want it. Is it not common knowledge that the Registrar General is currently the custodian of the document?’’ said Gumbo.

A recent Supreme Court ruling that President Robert Mugabe should hold by-elections in 33 constituencies that have been vacant for some time. There is fear that if the by-elections take place, Zanu (PF) could use them to justify a snap general election.

Gumbo said his party was yet to make a decision on the by-elections, but insisted that the next municipal, parliamentary and presidential elections would be held without a new voters’ roll or a new constitution. A draft constitution, that many hope will be used as the basis for the next elections, was recently completed, with the two MDC parties led by Morgan Tsvangirai and Welshman Ncube immediately endorsing it. Zanu (PF) is still dithering amid reported resistance from party hardliners.

‘‘We are definitely going to hold the next general elections without a new constitution or a fresh voters’ roll; they are taking too long and wasting our time. We are anxious to get out of this discordant GNU,’’ Gumbo said.

John Makumbe, a political scientist, said Zanu (PF) was gunning for an election without a clean voters’ roll as it would give them the chance to rig the results.

‘‘If Zanu (PF) gets its way, there will be massive rigging. There will be absolute mayhem. People who are 150 years old and long dead will vote,’’ said Makumbe.

He said the current ‘‘shambolic roll’’ should be discarded and a new one compiled after the national census that will take place next month, as the population survey would provide reliable information to guide constituency delimitation.

Chimhini, however, says what is important is to ensure that already registered voters have access to the roll and potential ones educated on how to go and register.

‘‘There is need to post rolls at polling stations and invite people to come and examine them. After that, it’s back to the drawing board for those responsible for compiling the roll, but the process will only be complete if people are given a chance to verify their details,’’ he said.

He added that embarking on a new voter compilation exercise might expose potential voters to political violence and force them to shun the process.
The Interim President of Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn, Simba Makoni, said his party had an old voters' roll that he described as ''useless''.

''What we have is the 2008 voters roll but that is of no use because, as the Registrar General claims, they are constantly updating it. Many things have happened since 2008 and the roll should constantly capture that,'' said Makoni.

Tobaiwa Mudede is a dyed in the wool ZANU PF supporter. He will use his office to further the beliefs and policies of ZANU PF. He cares not for free and fair elections and cares not of anything but the Mugabe party ‘winning’ any new election.

Not only should he be embarrassed, he should be retired and then made to answer for his actions throughout the decades he has held office.


I wonder just how Gono will deal with his own errant deeds at the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe? Will he order his own arrest?

I doubt it!

Reserve Bank governor, Gideon Gono on Tuesday threw the gauntlet on bankers increasing the capital requirements of banks to million saying he is prepared to send to jail bankers who abuse depositors funds, a week after the closure of Royal bank.

Gono who holds a position of disagreement between President Robert Mugabe's ZANU PF and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's MDC said he will push for amendments to cleanse the banking sector of unruly bankers who abuse depositors’ funds resulting in closure of banks.

He said he will implement new measures before his tenure at the apex bank expires in 16 months.

'Let me just promise you, as I have said elsewhere, I have 16 months to go to the end of the second term, any nonsense in the financial sector believe me you will go before I go. That's my promise to depositors, I have no mercy, and I am not seeking to be reappointed. I can even go today but I will make sure before I go the banking sector of Zimbabwe will be as strong as no other point in its history,' Gono said at the central bank.

'Bankers are going to be disciplined as never before. If it means to put you in jail in order to make sure that your institutions are safe and sound I will do that. We shall be amending the banking sector legislation.'

The central bank increased minimum capital requirements for commercial banks from .5 million to million among other increases to push for bank mergers as most banks are unlikely to be able to meet the new capital requirements.

Last week Royal Bank was closed after it faced liquidity crisis by failing to pay depositors their funds. The bank is currently suspended to allow the major shareholders to allow new owners who can inject capital before it can be placed on curatorship.

Gono is blamed for printing the local Zimbabwean dollar resulting in hyperinflation which ravaged the southern African country's economy before the formation of the unity government by Mugabe and Tsvangirai in February 2009.

The position of the central bank chief was the centre of disagreement between the
MDC and Zanu PF, with the premier's party accusing Gono of running down the economy but Mugabe re-appointed him to his post.

Gono’s re-appointment at the helm of the RBZ was autonomous and happened without any discussion with the MDC– the supposed partners in the badly constructed Zimbabwean coalition government.

Gono enjoys the protection of Mugabe when it comes to his illegal actions over the years.

And no he is happy enough to threaten other bankers.


Whilst ridding Zimbabweof ZANU PF is a wonderful idea and a serious goal to aim for, it will not be an easy job seeing as they will do anything and everything to remain in power. Even a loss at the ballot in 2008 proved no obstacle to the Mugabe party.

Exiled mainstream MDC treasurer-general Roy Bennett has urged party members to wake up from slumber and invoke the spirit of “2000” and finish Zanu PF.

“But how do we secure a transfer of power? We must build pressure and we must return to the politics of competition and confrontation. The spirit of 2000 must arise.

“We must vote in massive numbers at the next elections.
“We must force Zanu PF to show its hand, whether through rigging or violence. Then we must finish the job through a combination of internal and external pressure,” Bennett said.

“This time there can be no going back. No more election theft, no more Government of National Unity (GNU), no more half-baked solutions. We want a new Zimbabwe and it is time to take hold of our destiny,” he added. Bennett went into self-exile in South Africa in 2010 fearing alleged relentless judicial persecution by Zanu PF.

He first sought political asylum in South Africa in 2006 after the state implicated him in an alleged plot to assassinate President Robert Mugabe during a visit to Mutare, in Manicaland Province, where Bennett once owned a commercial farm.

He is famously or infamously known for shoving Justice minister Patrick Chinamasa in Parliament in 2003.Bennett added that people should be seized with elections and removing Zanu PF from power rather than the new constitution as it can be dealt with after MDC attains power.

“Many of Zimbabwe’s laws are actually good on paper. The problem is Zanu PF disregards the law whenever it suits them. They have elevated the power of the gun over the power of the law. So let us be logical.'

“First we must get rid of Zanu PF. Then we can establish conditions that give the law its power. And then we can make or remake the constitution and related legislation,” he said.

Bennett was seconded by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai to be the deputy minister of Agriculture in 2009, but Mugabe refused to swear him in.

He was replaced by Seiso Moyo as deputy minister of Agriculture.
Roy Bennett has rallied the electorate to invoke the spirit of the year 2000.

Mugabe will be cursing Bennett under his breath as he hears of this. Bennett is the perpetual fly around Mugabe’s head, even though the ZANU PF leader attempted to get rid of him by various means since the MDCwin in 2008.


Earlier in this posting I mentioned a census. Well, I wasn’t far off the mark, with Zimbabweans eager to hire out their cars to government for use in precisely that mission.

Hundreds of Zimbabweans are flocking to the government’s Central Mechanical Engineering Department (CMED) with the hope that their motor vehicles will be snapped up for the conduction of the forthcoming national census set for next month.

Some residents of
Bulawayo, Gweru and Harare told VOA Studio 7 long queues are now the order of the day at CMED depots following a notice published last Thursday by the state entity inviting motorists and corporate organizations to hire out their cars for the program.

They said the and per day payment for vehicles being offered by the
CMED is so lucrative that even large numbers of civil servants are abandoning their stations to offer their personal cars for hire.

Treasury has already set aside million for conducting the national census running from august 17 to 28. At least million is needed for the exercise.

Harare resident Edson Chikuma said the money being offered by the CMED is attracting even motorists with battered vehicles.

Bulawayo resident Clemency Sibanda said the CMED is expected to only hire roadworthy vehicles. “The department is also expected to use its own drivers in order to minimize damage on hired vehicles,” said Sibanda.

CMED officials declined to comment referring all inquiries to Transport Minister Nicholas Goche who declined to talk to Studio 7.

My simple question is where did the government get the money for the hiring of all of these vehicles if they are as broke as reported?

Another question is how many of these vehicles will visit cemeteries to pick up names for additional numbers?


Take care.