Fireworks over Retosa at SADC ministerial meeting

Harare:  The Regional Tourism Organisation of Southern Africa, the tourism marketing, promotion and development arm of SADC is teetering on the brink of collapse as some member states sharply disagree with the big brother mentality of South Africa in particular. This writer has it on record that on November 29 2013 SADC ministers in charge of tourism met in Maputo, Mozambique where South Africa, supported by Mozambique, proposed the collapsing of Retosa, which they feel is blocking them from abusing their big brother status in the region.

ACP lawmakers take a stand on ICC, Central African Republic, Zimbabwe

Addis Ababa:  The ACP Parliamentary Assembly pronounced united positions on three pressing issues for the 79-member group of African, Caribbean and Pacific states, including on the International Criminal Court, the deteriorating security situation in the Central African Republic, and Zimbabwe-EU relations. The full text of each resolution can be accessed, below.

Blair denies pressuring South Africa to topple Mugabe

Johannesburg:  Former British prime minister Tony Blair denied Wednesday putting pressure on South Africa while he was in office to help remove Zimbabwe leader Robert Mugabe in a military operation.  South Africa's ex-president Thabo Mbeki claimed in an interview that Britain had urged it to topple Mugabe when a political and economic crisis escalated in the late 2000s.  But Blair's spokesman denied this had happened.  "Tony Blair has long believed that Zimbabwe would be much better off without Robert Mugabe and always argued for a tougher stance against him, but he never asked anyone to plan or take part in any such military intervention," he told AFP in London.

Removals from Botswana up 30 percent

Harare:  The number of Zimbabweans deported from Botswana this year is up 30 percent compared to 2012 as the neighbouring country steps up efforts to drive out illegal immigrants. According to immigration officials 22,675 people had been deported form Botswana by October this year, compared to about 17,402 over the same period last year. In October alone 2,940 Zimbabweans were sent back across the border compared to 1,505 sent back home in the same month last year.

Zimbabwe to review trade pact with SA

Harare: Zimbabwe will review its trade agreements with regional countries, particularly South Africa, amid concerns in Government and industry that some third party products from that country are entering Zimbabwe under the guise of Sadc rules of origin. Industry and Commerce Deputy Minister Chiratidzo Mabuwa told Members of Parliament in Victoria Falls that the country will review trade rules with regional partners with emphasis on South Africa due to abuse of the Sadc rules of origin trade pact. Mrs Mabuwa said  some South African companies were receiving cheap products from Asia and were then putting South African trademarks before exporting to Zimbabwe.

Over 2 million people in Zimbabwe will require food assistance by early next year

Some 2.2 million Zimbabweans will need food assistance in the pre-harvest period from January to March next year, a United Nations agency said today, warning that food security in the southern African country continue to deteriorate.

G-15 calls for heightened south-south cooperation

New York:  The G-15 foreign ministers, meeting on the sidelines of the General Assembly, renewed their commitment for enhanced engagement and cooperation among themselves, as well as with the relevant Geneva-based institutions. Their primary focus was on newly emerging areas of cooperation in step with the evolving post-2015 development agenda. The Group agreed to expand cooperation in four new thematic areas – information communication technology, intellectual property, migration for development and renewable energy.

SADC engaging West over sanctions, says Zulu

New York: South African president Jacob Zuma's international relations advisor, Ms Lindiwe Zulu, yesterday said regional efforts were now on lobbying the West to lift its illegal economic sanctions as captured in the communiqué of the 33rd Summit of Sadc Heads of State and Government that met in Lilongwe, Malawi last month.

The troubling path ahead for US-Zimbabwe relations: testimony

Washington:  The seriously flawed presidential and parliamentary elections of July 31 were a missed opportunity for Zimbabwe. The United States and other members of the international community had clearly communicated, both publicly and privately, a willingness to consider rolling back sanctions and other restrictions on Zimbabwe and charting a path to full normalization of relations – if Zimbabwe demonstrated that it was ready to allow its deserving people to freely choose their next government through a fair, peaceful, and credible election. The fundamental challenge the United States faces, now that President Mugabe has been sworn in for another five-year term, the new parliament has been seated, and a new cabinet is taking shape, is how best to put into action our longstanding commitment to the Zimbabwean people while maintaining a firm stance against those who continue to undermine democracy and hinder Zimbabwe’s progress.

Zimbabwe elections: what if there had been no vote rigging?

Johannesburg:  Since the first preliminary results of Zimbabwe’s 31 July 2013 harmonised elections emerged, most talk has been about whether or not the elections were free, fair and credible, with the main bone of contention being the rigging of the voters roll. Little has been said about the voting behaviour of the Zimbabweans per se, why - apart from the rigging - still so many voted for ZANU-PF and 89 year old Robert Mugabe, who has been President since 1980.


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