Week 48

A weekly selection from Zimbabwean newspapers

Energy and Power Development Minister Edgar Moyo delivers sweet news to Zimbabweans

Hwange Thermal Power Station’s Unit 7 will start feeding power into the national grid on Wednesday following completion of routine maintenance work on it. This will boost the country’s power generation capacity.

Energy and Power Development Minister Edgar Moyo told The Sunday Mail that the reintroduction of the two units would help ease load-shedding ahead of the festive season.

“On Saturday, November 25 (yesterday), we are adding 100MW to the grid,” he said. “This will be power from Unit 4, which has been undergoing refurbishment.
“On Wednesday, we are adding 300MW from Unit 7, which has been out for a few weeks and has been undergoing maintenance.

“So, in total, we expect 400MW to be added to the grid this coming week. This will obviously ease load-shedding across the country as power is added to the grid.”


The Chronicle (state owned)

LEARNERS with disability at Fatima Primary School in Lupane will finally have a decent place to sleep following construction of a hostel by Uluntu Community Foundation. 

Uluntu was registered in 2008 to provide a people centred mechanism of community development and empowerment in the Bulawayo and Matabeleland provinces and serves as a convener and a catalyst for community empowerment through training and grant making. 
The organization aims to facilitate community led and people centered development to alleviate poverty, hunger and empower communities in response to pandemics and other natural disasters. 

It is constructing a hostel to accommodate 45 disabled learners at Fatima Primary, a huge relief for the vulnerable kids who have over the years been using makeshift facilities at Fatima High School which is some distance away and putting them in danger, as well as a priest house at Fatima Mission where the Roman Catholic priests were providing accommodation for them. 
Fatima is a referral special needs school in Matabeleland North and the institution is also administered by the Zimbabwe Foundation for Education with Production (Zimfep). 


Intensified engagement of men necessary in fight against early child marriages | The Sunday News (state owned)

WHILE the fight to end early child marriages requires the involvement of every member of the community, some elderly men continue to prey on teenagers and turn them into wives, in the process destroying their future. 

In an incident that left the community of Gwanda shocked, 14-year-old Sikhulile Sibanda, a victim of an early child marriage, died after enduring eight months of a severe illness caused by giving birth at an early age. Sikhulile from the Lumene area in Gwanda got pregnant at the age of 13 in April last year by a 27-year-old Munashe Ncube who had eloped with her. The teenager was supposed to start Form One last year. 


Government processes Old Gwanda Road construction papers in record time | The Sunday News (state owned)

THE Government has been commended for processing the Old Gwanda Road construction project papers in record time with the investor optimistic of receiving the green light to commence work before year-end. 

The Government early this year welcomed the proposal by Zwane Enterprise to rehabilitate the 120km Old Gwanda Road at a cost of US$150 million under a build, operate and transfer model. It further gave the company the go ahead to conduct preliminary works where engineers and surveyors conducted the feasibility study on the ground which process was completed in September. 

After completing the feasibility study, Zwane Enterprise handed over the report to the Government to facilitate the granting of concession agreements as well as licences to pave way for the commencement of the project. 


Drying water sources now death traps for livestock | The Sunday News (state owned)

FARMERS in most parts of Matabeleland provinces have begun to lose cattle to drought as most watering points have started drying up in the face of excessively hot weather conditions. 

The farmers, most of them communal, have found themselves in a dire situation and have made distress calls to be rescued through borehole drilling initiatives before losing more of their life investments as some cattle are getting stuck in the mud looking for water, and eventually die. 

On Thursday villagers in Gohole Village in Kezi, Matobo District in Matabeleland South Province had to rescue five cattle that had got stuck in the mud in the Hozalenditshi Dam as they were trying to get closer to the little remaining water in the dam. 


Umzingwane to benefit from refurbished tourist attractions | The Sunday News (state owned)

COMMUNITIES in Umzingwane District, Matabeleland South Province have expressed excitement following the refurbishment of Unesco world heritage tourism and historical sites dotted around their district by the Government saying the development is going to boost their revenue streams as it will allow them to revive community tourism. 

Umzingwane tourist attraction sites which include Diana’s Pools, Lumene Falls, Matshatshatsha Waterfalls, spectacular rock formations, balancing rocks and the rare orbicular granite and caves are mainly within the buffer zone of Matobo World Heritage Site. The district is also rich in history with historical sites such as Rhodes Indaba site and caves that are decorated with amazing rock paintings chronicling the life of the San people. 


Zanu PF abusers called out in EU report

Zanu PF supporters were some of the most hostile people on social media as they published false information while threatening government critics and opposition activists during the election period, the European Union (EU) has said. 

According to a final report by the EU Elections Observation Mission (EU EOM), the Zanu PF trolls were also guilty of spreading propaganda ahead of the disputed August elections. 

The EU EOM observed hundreds of social media accounts, which were using pseudonyms, while posting offensive content and propaganda. 
Politicians and their supporters were active on social media, mainly X, Facebook and WhatsApp to canvas for votes.


Draconian police law challenged in court

The government has been dragged to court over the abuse of some sections of the Maintenance of Peace and Order Act (Mopa) by the police to ban rallies and other gatherings by the opposition and civic groups. 

Mopa was enacted in 2019 to repeal the draconian Public Order and Security Act (Posa), but the new law retained some repressive clauses such as limiting the right to peaceful assembly. 

Under Mopa, individuals, political parties and other groupings must seek police clearance before holding any public gatherings. 

Activist and director of WELEAD Trust, Namatai Kwekweza contesting sections 8 (3) and 8 (6) in her High Court challenge argued that some provisions of Mopa were being abused by police. 


Mnangagwa gets ultimatum over violations

President Emmerson Mnangagwa has been threatened with a lawsuit for failing to hold accountable members of the security forces accused of human rights violations including killing civilians. 

Mnangagwa last year signed into law the Zimbabwe Independent Complaints Commission Act providing for the investigation and prosecution of members of security services for misconduct. 

This followed complaints of human rights abuses and reports of alleged partisan conduct by members of the security forces in the discharge of their duties. 

Mnangagwa has, however, been delaying to appoint commissioners of the Independent Complaints Commission (ICC), raising eyebrows over his sincerity and political will to act on human rights violations involving the security forces. 

On Friday, the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) gave him a November 30 deadline to provide answers or face court action. 


Coltart engages AfDB to solve water crisis

Bulawayo mayor David Coltart has engaged the African Development Bank (AfDB) for funding to address the city’s water challenges. 

Residents are going for days without water due to dwindling levels at the city’s supply dams. 

Umzingwane Dam is set to be decommissioned next month as it was 4. 13% full as of Friday last week. 
 “Unless the government accepts that the city is a water shortage area, we may need to turn to AfDB funding,” Coltart said in an interview. 


The Imposter Unravelling Zimbabwe – Cathy Buckle

Under a scorching sun in a deep blue November sky where we are gasping for rain, the ‘imposter’ madness came to my home town this week in the most ridiculous situation which continues to purge Zimbabwe of the last shreds of democracy. “Thank you for the support. I have been recalled by the imposter.”  Those were the bizarre words that popped up on my phone one day this week; they came from our local Ward Councillor, elected by us, three months ago, sworn in and already at work in the town. 

Every morning for the past six weeks we’ve woken up wondering if we’ll find that the officials we voted for will still be in office or if they’ll be out on the streets, expelled by an ‘imposter’ claiming to be the Secretary General of the opposition CCC party. The ‘imposter,’ Sengezo Tshabangu, who seems to be untouchable, has somehow managed to use his false claim of being the CCC Secretary General to have everyone from Senators and MPs to Mayors and Municipal Councillors expelled from office claiming that they are no longer members of the CCC party.


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