Week 37

A weekly selection from Zimbabwean newspapers

Water crisis hits Victoria Falls…residents forced to buy bulk water

Victoria Falls Combined Residents Association chairperson Kelvin Moyo said the water challenges were caused by pipe bursts.  

ZIMBABWE’S prime tourist resort city Victoria Falls has been hit by a serious water crisis reportedly caused by pipe bursts. 

Residents are now forced to buy water from suppliers who are cashing in on the crisis by charging an arm and leg for the precious liquid. 

Residents this week circulated pictures of water bowsers which were reportedly selling water in some parts of Victoria Falls suburbs. 


Shape up or ship out, Harare cllrs told

HARARE Provincial Affairs and Devolution secretary Tafadzwa Muguti has read the riot act to the newly-elected councillors, ordering them to prioritise service delivery. 

Harare has been facing a major service delivery crisis with residents complaining of water shortage, irregular refuse collection and lack of basic amenities. 

In an address earlier this week, Muguti warned councillors who fail to transform the lives of the residents saying: “As government, we expect you to channel resources towards efficient service delivery. My office drives the devolution agenda and we expect to work with Harare City Council in the achievement of the underlisted: provincial co-ordination, provincial economic development, infrastructure planning and development and environmental management. 


Zimbabwe: Minister Falls From Grace, Sworn in as Rural Councillor

MASHONALAND West Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister, Mary Mliswa-Chikoka has put up a brave face and has taken oath of office as a women quota councillor at Hurungwe Rural District Council. 

The effervescent government bureaucrat, who doubles as Zanu PF provincial chairman, was a victim of internecine fights that rocked Zanu PF primaries resulting in her losing her Hurungwe West constituency to little-known Chinjai Kambuzuma. 

In a bid to stay relevant, she sought solace in landing the women quota slot amid rumour she was eyeing to become chairperson of the wildlife-rich district authority, where she enjoys cordial relations with its embattled Chief Executive Officer, Luke Kalavina. 


United Nations congratulates President Mnangagwa | The Sunday News (state owned)

UNITED Nations Secretary-General Mr António Guterres has congratulated President Mnangagwa for winning the recent presidential election, undertaking to work closely with the Government to “accelerate development and ensure inclusive and sustainable economic growth.” 

Mr Guterres becomes the latest international leader to congratulate President Mnangagwa, who won the August 23 and 24 elections.  He won the Presidential election after polling 2 350 711 votes (52,6 percent), beating his nearest challenger, Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC)’s, Mr Nelson Chamisa, who got 1 967 343 (44 percent). 

Several leaders have also sent congratulatory messages to President Mnangagwa and Zanu-PF following their victory in last month’s harmonised elections.  Russian President Vladimir Putin was among the first high profile leaders to send a congratulatory message to the President. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa also wished President Mnangagwa success in his second term in office. Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan, Namibian leader, Hage Geingob, Botswana President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi and President Filipe Jacinto Nyusi of Mozambique have all sent congratulatory messages. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko also sent a congratulatory message. 


Harare faces acute water shortage

THE Harare City Council has announced that the capital city will experience acute water shortages due to a “lake turn” phenomenon at Lake Chivero, the city’s main water supply dam. 

In an urgent notice yesterday, town clerk Hosiah Chisango said the lake turn started affecting water supplies since Tuesday night. 

A lake turn is a natural phenomenon which occurs when warm water at the bottom of a lake rises to the top following a sudden change in weather such as a cold front. 

“This happens when warm water at the bottom of the lake rises to the top of the water body where water for treatment is abstracted. 

“This phenomenon brings dirty water to the abstraction point (the level where water is drawn from the lake to the treatment works for treatment),” he said. 


New era for Bulawayo as Coltart elected mayor

Ward 4 Councillor David Coltart has been elected the new mayor of Bulawayo, with Ward 9 Councillor Donaldson Mabuto as his deputy. 

The two were unanimously elected by all councillors at a meeting on Monday. 

In his acceptance speech, Coltart said he would adopt a zero-tolerance approach to corruption and set up a hotline for residents to report any corrupt activities. 

“We are all conscious of the allegations of corruption hovering around our city,” he said. “What I want to undertake today as mayor is I will adopt a zero-tolerance attitude towards corruption. That is directed to all my councillors, each one of you, there will be zero tolerance approach. It will not be hidden. This also applies to full-time members of council staff.” 


Coltart lays out vision for Bulawayo

Former Primary and Secondary Education minister David Coltart says his immediate task if elected as Bulawayo mayor this week is to clean-up the city that he says has become a cesspit. 

Coltart, a Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) senior official, was elected ward 4 councilor during the August 23 elections. 

CCC leader, Nelson Chamisa, told party supporters during a campaign rally in Bulawayo that the party had endorsed Coltart to become the city’s mayor. 

Elections to choose a new mayor for Zimbabwe’s second biggest city are set for tomorrow. 


New faces in Zimbabwe’s 10th Parliament as opposition urged to push for electoral reforms

“On Thursday, September 7, 279 parliamentarians from the ruling Zanu-PF party and Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) were sworn into the 10th Parliament, as Zimbabwe moves on from the 23 August general election outcomes.” 

There are 176 Zanu-PF legislators against the CCC’s 103 in Zimbabwe’s 10th Parliament. 

Former independent legislator Temba Mliswa urged the opposition to push for electoral reforms. 

Eighty senators were also sworn in. 

Zanu-PF fell slightly short of a two-thirds majority, which would have given them leverage to change laws. 

In the Senate, Zanu-PF has 33 senators against the CCC’s 27. 

The 60 senators from both parties will be joined by 18 traditional chiefs and two representatives of people living with disabilities.


New ministers speak out

Speaking soon after their swearing-in ceremony at State House, several ministers and deputies, notably the young, said they would use their skills to bring change to the ministries.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Monday appointed 26 Cabinet ministers and deputies as his administration seeks to hit the ground running after last month’s disputed elections.
ICT, Postal and Courier Services minister Tatenda Mavetera said she would employ an all-inclusive approach in harnessing urban and rural communities.
Primary and Secondary Education minister Torerai Moyo said the Continuous Assessment Learning Activity (CALA) would stay, but with some changes.
Twenty-three ministers, 10 provincial ministers and 11 deputy ministers were sworn in yesterday.


Hurungwe in major mosquito spraying exercise

MALARIA-PRONE Hurungwe district, in Mashonaland West provinvce, will soon embark on a major household spraying programme to curb the spread of the disease. 

Hurungwe agriculture extension officer Joseph Nyagweta has pledged to help communicate the exercise to farmers. 

“Hurungwe is a farming productive district on tobacco and maize. We will engage farmers with accurate information to take note and heed on the programmes. We need healthy farmers,” Nyagweta said. 

Hurungwe agriculture extension officer Joseph Nyagweta has pledged to help communicate the exercise to farmers.  

Hurungwe has a population of 439 611, according to the 2022 Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency results and a non-governmental organisation, Anglican Cross Boarder Malaria Initiative, which is supporting awareness campaigns in the district. 


Violence drives women away from elections

WOMEN’S rights’ groups have cited political intimidation and violence as the major reason why fewer women participated in the August 23 and 24 elections compared to 2018. 

 While women constitute the majority of the country’s population, over the years, women’s participation in politics has been declining with only 11% participating in the August election. 

 United Zimbabwe Alliance leader Elisabeth Valerio was the only female presidential aspirant compared to four in 2018. 

 In 2018 there was 48% women representation in the Senate, 31,5% in the National Assembly and a mere 13,3% in local government. 

 In last month’s elections, the participation of women regressed with women candidates accounting for 11% only. 

 According to an election situational report from one of the country’s leading women groups, there were documented cases where women were victims of voter intimidation by political parties. 


Review: Mugabe’s Legacy by David B Moore

Robert Mugabe clung to the hero myth that had been built of himself as the “liberation fighter president” even as his rule saw Zimbabwe isolated and bloodied. Robert Gabriel Mugabe’s place in history is complicated. 

But by the time he was removed in an army coup in 2017 after 37 years in power, Mugabe’s legacy was seriously tarnished. His rule had become despotic, with political opponents jailed, tortured and murdered, and he was castigated for permissive attitude towards grand corruption within his government. 

In 1980 when Zimbabwe achieved independence, the local currency, the Zimbabwe dollar, was worth twice that of the US dollar: and Moore observes that “if Zimbabwean people accepted that scale for weighing the merits of past and present then by 2005, life was 56,000 times worse than in 1980.”


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