"We won't touch that ship!"How worker power foiled Mugabe's Chinese arms dealJenny Grice
"It's our own comrades that are going to be killed. They were with us during our struggle in South Africa. When people need food and shelter how can you send arms to kill the same people!"This is what motivated dockworkers and members of Satawu to block 77 tons of arms and ammunition bound for Zimbabwe.Satawu members went into action after inspectors belonging to the dockworkers International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) informed them that six containers of the dangerous cargo were due in Durban's port.Satawu set up a meeting with the management of Transnet National Ports Authority.
"We told them that we didnâ€™t think it was appropriate to allow this vessel to come in and dock," says Satawu provincial secretary, JV Dube. "We told them there was such a volatile situation in Zimbabwe where human rights was not existing and people were being beaten.
We informed them that our members would not handle it."Transnet told them that there hands were tied. They were waiting for a permit. As soon as the permit came, they would let the ship in."We told them that if it came in, our members would not touch it.
We informed them that they could not charge anyone because we were going to use international law that allows dockworkers to refuse to handle goods if they are hazardous," says Dube.
Meanwhile concerned citizens lodged a separate court challenge demanding that the ship be prevented from docking. Outside the harbour, the ship lay anchored, waiting its fate. The court took five minutes to agree to the application.
By 6.15pm on Friday April 18 the sheriff set off to serve the papers. "That's when we started to receive news from ITF inspectors that the vessel had disappeared!" "We have been in contact with comrades from Mozambique and Angola," says Dube. "We have taken a stand as Satawu and the ITF. This cargo will not be handled by any harbour around Africa!"
News from the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU)
Dear Colleagues,After the blocking of last week's arms shipment to Zimbabwe at the Durban port, news reaching us is that a second consignment of more sophisticated Chinese weaponry will be flown to Zimbabwe.This is at a time when the post election retribution by ZANU PF has reached alarming levels. Thousands of people have been displaced and are thronging the opposition MDC offices seeking accommodation and medical attention. On the other hand, ZANU PF is professing ignorance of the violence against innocent citizens in the rural and urban areas. Regards,ZCTU Information
Terror dossier compiledAs reports of terror on citizens increases, civil society, labour and legal organizations have set up the Truth and Justice Coalition (TJC) on Zimbabwe. Its purpose is to "identify perpetrators and seek legal redress for the victims of crimes against humanity and other serious crimes in Zimbabwe."The dossier already includes names of over 200 ZANU (PF) military, militia, members of parliament and war veterans who it claims "in their personal and/or professional capacity have unleashed terror and tyranny against civilians in recent months" and who "driven by personal greed, (who) have defamed and destroyed democracy in our nation.
"The TJC has also vowed to expose these people's "illicit money laundering", "property destruction, including farm looting and public transportation fraud" and possibly "blood diamonds".
The TJC is appalled at the way in which "this once proud liberation movement" has subverted the institutions of government like the army, the police and the judiciary so that they answer to the ruling clique rather than to the citizens.
Cosatu has added its voice to those criticizing the Mugabe regime. It has set May 10 to march in Durban, Gauteng and Cape Town "in solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe, and to demand the removal of the Mugabe dictatorship and the installation of a government elected by a majority on 29 March 2008."
Zanu-PF clampdown on its opposition – 1982-1985
"Between 1982 and 1985 the Fifth Brigade brutally crushed any resistance in Matabeleland. Over 20 000 civilians died and were buried in mass gravesâ€¦."The Fifth Brigade was different from all other army units in that it was not integrated into the army.
It was answerable only to the Prime Minister, Robert Mugabe, and not to the normal army command structures.""It was disbanded in 1984 after allegations of brutality and murder during the Brigade's occupation of Matabeleland."(Source: Wikipedia – www.wikipedia.org)
Zanu-PF clampdown on its opposition – 2008
Tapiwa Mbwanda, 57, of Hurungwe West in Mashonaland West. He was killed on Saturday 12, April 2008. Murunde Tembo of Mudzi North in Mashonaland East was attacked on Tuesday 15 April and sustained serious injuries and broken legs. He died on his way to hospital.
Tatenda Chibika, from Mutoko East in Mashonaland East was shot by a Zanu PF supporter and war veteran, Richard Makoni at Chibeta Business Centre on 17 April.
Moses Bashitiwayo from Maramba Pfungwe in Mashonaland East was attacked on 17 April. Moses Makiwa of Lower Watershed in Wedza, Mashonaland East was killed following an assault by Zanu PF supporters .
He was buried on 19 April.Brighton Mbwera (junior), 5 from Manyika Village in Uzumba died after a house he was sleeping in was set on fire by Zanu PF on the 18th of April 2008. Mberwa junior was burnt to death. Zanu PF thugs forced the parents to bury their child without post mortem. Police had to interfere and exhumed the body for post mortem.1.
Chipo Nyamuremwa, 38, of Mudzi in Mashonaland East had her house burnt down and is now displaced. Her parents were victimised as they were accused of having joined the MDC. She is now in hiding in Harare.2. Lloyd Fombe, 27, of Mudzi had his house burnt and food and property looted and seeking shelter in Harare.3.
Adam Katarura, 25, of Mudzi has fled his home after receiving several threats from Zanu PF supporters. He spent several days hiding in the mountains and since sought shelter in Harare.4. Abisha Chimunhu, 34, of Maramba Pfungwe in Mashonaland East had his house burnt down for voting for the MDC and lost all his property.
He is now in hiding in Harare.5. Mark Rutsito, 35, had his house burnt. His parents were harassed as they were accused of supporting the MDC. Rutsito has since sought shelter in Harare.6.
Christopher Dube, 33, of Mudzi South is in hiding in Harare after his house was torched on 15th April 2008 by Zanu PF supporters led by the army. They looted household goods and beat up villagers.7.
Chenesai Kahomwe, 38, had his house torched and property looted after he was accused of voting for the MDC.8. Lamus Makanda, 23, of Mudzi North fled his home after Zanu PF militia torched his home and other villagers after being accused of voting for the MDC. He is currently in hiding in Harare.9.
Aplania Gavhiyao, 31, of Mudzi North had his home attacked by Zanu PF after he was accused of supporting the MDC.10. Tongesai Zhakata, 34, of Mudzi North is seeking shelter in Harare after his home was attacked by Zanu PF supporters for voting for the MDC.11.
Thomas Chibale, Robeson White, Shepherd Mtasa, Maxwell Zamba Tichaona Nyoni, Simbarashe Nyoni and Ezekiel Mapfumo whose wife Praxedes Chimeka was stripped and nearly raped in front of him were assaulted and robbed of their property in ward 4 Epworth in Harare.12.
Winmore Makoto of UMP rural in Mashonaland East has fled his home after Zanu PF activists came to his place and threatened him with death.13. In Mutoko North, Fungai Naison lost his property which includes 4 blankets, bed door frames and food stuff after an attack on his homestead by Zanu PF activists.14. Tichapera Kadungure, 36, of UMP was attacked by Zanu PF supporters for supporting the MDC.
He spent 3 days sleeping in the mountains until he managed to escape to Harare where he is seeking refuge.15. Jennifer Chasemwa, 27, on 15th April 2008 escaped from Zanu PF supporters after he had been captured after being accused of campaigning and voting for the MDC.
His house was burnt and Chasemwa spent three days with no food or drinking water.16. Elizabeth Monica Jeke, 49, an MDC council candidate from UMP was on 10th April 2008 assaulted by Zanu PF activists led by soldiers. She lost $28 billion during the attack, 10 x 50kg of maize.17.
Tambudzai Kariri and Jaine Nyakusengwa from Zvataida rural district council in UMP were abducted by Zanu PF supporters. Their homes including livestock, chickens and goats were burnt.18. Alice Maringa, 26, from Mudzi district had $2 billion, food and clothes stolen from her when armed Zanu PF supporters attacked her home 15 April 2008. The leader of group was identified as Issac Nyamukoho.19.
War veterans and Zanu PF youths on 15 April attacked Dick Ngwerume, 27, on allegations that he supported the MDC. He was the election agent of the MDC in last month's elections.20. Maxwell Sakutukwa, 36, from Mutoko South was severely beaten by Zanu PF supporters on 13 April 2008.
He has since fled to Harare were he is seeking refuge.21. Maita Nyakabayu, 28, from Mudzi West in Mashonaland East was beaten by the Zanu PF militia for supporting the MDC and being the party's polling agent in the district.22.
Perpertual Mususa, 22, was chased away from her home on allegations that her mother was the chairperson for Mutoko South.23. Tawanda Mutekede, 21, from Mudzi West in Mashonaland East escaped from his home following an attack, were he lost all his belongings including food.24. Forget Mutekede, 28, from Mudzi West was abducted by Zanu PF youth militia.
He lost all his belongings when the youth raided his homestead on 13 April 2008.25. Teramai Muronde, 32, from Vhombodzi Village in Mudzi was attacked by Zanu PF youths. He is the MDC chairman for the district.26. Chamunorwa Menjere, an MDC council candidate for ward 21 in Marondera East in the 29 March elections was attacked at his home and abducted to a Zanu PF base and was further tortured including his private parts.
The Zanu PF also burnt his house and looted his property.27. Dominic Musekiwa of ward 21 in Marondera East was attacked by the Zanu PF youth militia in the area for being an MDC activist and polling agent in the 29 March 2008 elections.
He was taken to a nearby river and was thrown into it but he however managed to escape.
The police were reluctant to record his statements after he made a report to them.28. Also in ward 21, Marondera East, Banlen Valenti was abducted by Zanu PF youth militia and war veterans who were moving around in a white Nissan Hardbody and a VW Golf. He was taken to a torture base and was severely assaulted until he managed to escape.
Valenti is now receiving treatment at a hospital in Harare.29. Lophas Chingore from Marondera East was attacked by the Zanu PF youth militia who were also driving a Nissan Harbody and taken to a torture base before he was severely attacked and is currently receiving medical attention in Harare.30.
Cannan Zharare of ward 21 in Marondera East was by Zanu PF youths for being an MDC member and activist. He was assaulted with all sorts of arms including baton sticks.31. In Mutoko, Mashonaland East province, Tangisai Chibanda, 34, was abducted by the police and taken to a Zanu PF torture base were he was detained four days before he managed to escape.32. Cassian Murawu, 32, of Mutoko has fled her home after being victimised by Zanu PF supporters in the area.
She has since sought refuge in Harare.33. Tiya Maruwa, 40, from Mutoko escaped being captured by Zanu PF members in the area because he is an active MDC supporter.34. Madziwa Chibanda, 27, fled his home to avoid capture and possible torture from MDC activists.35.
Washington Kufaigore, of Mutoko fled his home after being threatened with torture by Zanu PF supporters.36. Wilbert Savanhu, 34, from Mhondoro-Mubaira has fled his home after he was assaulted by Zanu PF supporters who were moving around in a white pick-up truck that had Zanu PF logos.37.
In Mutoko South, Rikitai Murawu, 29, fled from his home after Zanu PF militia led by uniformed soldiers chased 18 youths who were suspected to be MDC youths with guns, axes and whips.
He spent three days sleeping in the mountains and has since sought shelter in Harare.38. Nelson Magwere, 26, from Mutoko has since fled after Zanu PF youths and war veterans tried to abduct him.
They stole his grain money and MDC's regalia.39. Vimbai Rinomhota, 21, of Mutoko escaped from the district after being threatened with armed Zanu PF supporters.40. Tsitsi Ngide, 16, of Mutoko has been made homeless after Zanu PF youths and war veterans burnt her parents' home accusing them of supporting the MDC.41.
Taurai Chipusire, 28, of Harare South was attacked by Chindedza, the Zanu PF chairman for the constituency. Chindedza arrived at Chipusire home with 8 Zanu PF supporters.
He went to the police to report the attack but no action has been taken.Nyikadzino Muwirimi, 26, of Mutoko lost his grain after Zanu PF's supporters had attempted to abduct him. He however managed to escape and is in hiding in Harare.42.
Lovemore Chigama of, 25, from Mutoko had fled from his home after his family members including his father and grandfather were arrested.43. Passmore Chigogo, 31, of Harare South in Harare was locked outside his house at Hopley Farm by two Zanu PF supporters who were identified as Dzapasi and Kativhu.44.
Sheillas Ndaradzi, 37, of Mutoko South escaped from her home after she was informed that Zanu PF war veterans and youths wanted to torture him.45. Silvevester Marope, 31, of Mutoko South has fled his home after the Zanu PF militia came and threatened him with death.46.
Revai Mhere, of Mutoko South has fled from his home following threats by Zanu PF supporters in the area accusing him of being an MDC activist.47. Happiness Mutata, 29, of Maramba Pfungwe had his house burnt down and property and including $40 billion in cash stolen by Zanu PF members.48.
Tafadzwa and Mutata, 24, of Maramba Pfungwe, had his four roomed house burnt down by Zanu PF members and has since fled to Harare were his seeking shelter. The perpetrators have been identified Raphel Chimunhu, Mutsa Mbofa, Oswell Kaskura, Pedzisai Kareku, Dover Mutekede, David Guveya, Nyepanai Mutekede, Ian Kadandi, Tongai Sau, Tonderai Muchenje, Peter Nyauyanga, Marisa Henry Nyati, Jennifer Kabaira, reuben Nyabango and Cloudy Mashoko who accused Mutata for voting for the MDC.49. Folly Alberto, 19, of Maranba Pfungwe lost household goods including, six goats and 15 chickens, food and $1,3 billion after Zanu PF supporters torched his room. 50.
Rosemary Nyatenga, Patience Mapuranga, Marwisei Chizanga, Kenias Chisende, from Mutoko were severely assaulted by Zanu PF supporters and told to leave their homes. They are currently in hiding in Harare.51. Gift Kapawu, 32, of Maramba Pfungwe had his home destroyed by Zanu PF members who were led by war veterans known as Mazambani and Katsande.52.
Makebi Matsiwe, 52, of Maramba Pfungwe was seriously attacked by Zanu PF youths and war veterans after they accused him of supporting the MDC. The perpetrators later torched his house. 53. Kudzanai Matsiwe, 28, of Maramba Pfungwe had his property which includes five herd of cattle, seven goats, five sheep looted by Zanu PF supporters who accused Matsiwe of being an MDC supporter.54.
Peter Kabasa, 60 from Mutoko is seeking shelter in Harare after Zanu PF youths abducted his family. He doesn't know the state of his family members.55. Fadzanayi Pasipanodya of Maramba Pfungwe lost all his property after it was torched or stolen by Zanu PF supporters who accused him of being an MDC member.
The accused are Nyakabau, Maik Chiodza, Shora Mutihwa, Jealous Masenda, Aleck Chiutsi and Christopher Kagande.56. Ruramaqi Chikomwe, 24, of Harare West was arrested on 14 April for distributing the fliers of the 15 April stay-away.57. Blessing Mushonga, 21, of Murehwa is receiving treatment in Harare after he was knocked down by a white truck along the Nyamapanda Highway that was full of Zanu PF supporters.
After being knocked by the vehicle he was further assaulted until he lost consciousness.58. Nomatter Kofi, 26, of Mutoko is in hiding in Harare after his wife Memory Nyikayaramba was captured and was torutured and denied food and medication by Zanu PF supporters.59.
Misheck Nyama, 23, of Mabvuku, Harare was attacked by four Zanu PF supporters who were armed with iron bars who accused him of being an MDC activist.60.
Albert Mukande, of Seke spent five days in the bust after he was attacked by Zanu PF supporters. He was an MDC polling agents during the 29 March elections. He identified his perpetrators as Jacob, Jerry, Lucia and Prtland.61.
Tichaona Madzinga, 39, of Mutoko South has fled his home after a group of armed Zanu PF supporters visited his home on 12 April and started assaulting him. They took his wife to a base were she is still detained. 62. Filter Chikuna, 21, of Chatima village in Mudzi North was arrested by military officers for being an active MDC activist.
He was assaulted with booted feet and has sustained a sprained ankle.63. In Mudzi West, Paul Nyikayaramba, was attacked on the night of 13 April by at least 50 Zanu PF youths. They torched his two roomed house, granary and stole 15 bags of groundnuts.
The gang was led by John Nyikayaramba, Learmore Mpukute, Edward Saineti and Murambiwa Kabaya.64. Samuel Nyamupenza, 26, from Mudzi West was attacked by over 60 Zanu PF supporters. They threw stones at his home before they torched it and looted some of his property.
The team was led by Oviyasi Chikukwa, Amon Matadza, Tafirenyika Matadza, Batsirayi Matadza, Richard Kamhindi, Fadzanai Kamhindi, Arnold Nyakuba and Learnmore Mupukuta.65. Takawira Hove, 34, Gokwe Sesame in Midlands,was abducted and tortured by five armed security agents one of them known Amos Jaravaza.
He was forced to release the MDC leadership structures in the constituency.66. Chenjerai Makuni, 30, from Mutoko id the district secretary of the MDC. He was arrested on 3 April of trumped up charges of receiving stolen property and was made to stay in custody for a week without going to court.
67. Muchineripr Nyakabau, 30, of Mutoko was rescued by three MDC activists after he had been abducted by Zanu PF supporters on 14 April. He was abducted at Nyamuzuwe village and was severely attacked by the youth militia.
68. On 12 April 2008 Blessing Gatakata, 22, of Mudzi West had his parents' three roomed house torched to the ground by Zanu PF supporters. All the property was burnt and Gatakata was abducted and taken to Chingururu centre were Zanu PF has a torture base before he managed to escape and is receiving treatment at a hospital in Harare. The perpetrators were identified as Itai Gawa, Nzwanai Tsvuura and Takesure Matyoka.
69. Clever Zinoro, 32, from Mutoko was captured by Zanu PF supporters on 14 April and torurted in from fronmt of the Zanu PF House of Assembly candidate for the area Marble Chinomona and senatorial candidate E. Jacob. Also present during the torture were members of the police, army and war veterans.
70. Chris Maritinu, 39, from Muzarabani South in Mashonaland Central had his house burnt by Zanu PF militia and war veterans on 17 April 2008. He was the chief election agent in the constituency in the 29 March elections. His house was burnt to the ground and his property including television, radio looted.
71. Rumero Jackson, 69, of Muzarabani South was left for dead after he was assaulted by Zanu PF supporters. They also torched his home including 30 chickens. He was hospitalised at St Albert's Mission before being transferred.
72. Joel Aleck, 32, from Chawarura Village had his hut set ablaze on 27 March 2008 for being an MDC polling agent in the just ended election. He made a report to the police and ten people were arrested but were released following the political intervention of Zanu PF House of Assembly candidate, Raradza.
73. Livison Chiyeri, 41, of Muzarabani South was beaten and tortured by Zanu PF supporters at Musakanya Village. They destroyed his solar panel and stole his property including radio, television and food.
74. Isaac Masimbarasi, 39, Mudzi South was assaulted in front of his wives and children for being an active MDC member. He managed to escape and is in hiding in Harare.
75. Tendai Muzadzi of Uzumba had his house burnt by Zanu PF youths after he a made a report to the police of being assaulted. They were demanding that Muzadzi should make a report to the police for them to be released.
76. Albert Kapfunde, 30, of Mutoko East has fled his home after a group of Zanu PF supporters with guns attacked their village on 13 April. He later managed to escape and is seeking refuge in Harare.
77. Francis Kamupazanga, 27, is a teacher at Chitenge Primary School in Karoi, Hurungwe. He has fled home after Zanu PF youths went on a rampage and attack him.
78. Passmore Mushonga, 32, of Chipfiko Village, Mutoko East fled his home after armed Zanu PF supporters led by the army and war veterans attacked them on 13 April 2008.79.
James Katsande of Mutoko East is in hiding in Harare after he was attacked by Zanu PF supporters on 13 April for supporting and campaigning for the MDC in the 29 March elections.