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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Farm updates

KARORI Farm update


1. Karori Farm - Charles Lock

On Thursday we obtained a High Court order, not withstanding an appeal, to remove our crops and equipment from Karori farm. The value of this is well over one and half million dollars.

We arrived on Friday morning with the messenger of Court and were only given three police officers by the DISPOL. The order specified that the Police were to ensure that the order was enacted. On arriving at the farm the messenger attempted to serve the papers on the soldiers under Brigadier Mujaji however the soldiers said that they had ben instructed by Mujaji to shoot anyone who attempted to take anything off the farm.
The two lorries we sent there were returned to Harare.

We returned to the DISPOL in Rusape and the messenger requested more police officers to enforce the order. The DISPOL told the messenger to take his order back to Harare as the police would not support it.

That message was conveyed in my presence to Superintendant Mahla by Ass Commissioner Crime Khumalo at PGHQ. I heard the order as I was in the office of Sup Mahle. We had to return and the messenger filed his return papers citing gross contempt by the soldiers and police.

On Sunday Mujaji and his soldiers stole diesel from the farm then using our tractors evicted all the senior staff from the farm and drove off all the workers who were trying to guard the maize and tobacco that we are attempting to deliver. The workers were dumped at Halfway House. Our cattle were driven off the farm. As it stands it is now a looting exercise as Mujaji has stolen over 300 tons maize and 150 tons of tobacco and all my equipment in spite of High Court Orders issued by Judge Patel. I am not even allowed in my home as the soldiers have threatened to shoot me. My domestics have been evicted off the farm by the army so my house will likely be looted tonight.

It is apparent that a military coup has taken place in Zimbabwe as the army are running the show and looting at will in face of the highest courts in the land. The Police are party to this and refuse to help openly. We have had workers shot, starved, evicted, over US$750 000 worth of crops stolen and that amount in equipment by the Zimbabwe National Army.

We are appealing to the GPA to sort this out or do we take the GPA to Court and SADC for this theft by the Army and Police


Death notices

DUMISANI SIBANDA - The Shareholders, Directors, Management and Staff of the Treger Group of Companies extend their deepest sympathy to Mrs. Sibanda and her family on their very sad loss. Dumisani Sibanda was a respected member of the Group and will be greatly missed."+++++Gallagher Alf - Rest in Peace old friend. The Watson's and Staff of Makado Ranch.Gallagher Alf - A true gentleman. Rest in Peace. Wayne, Verna and Kieron++++++++A short condolence about the late Eric Francis Broughton(I was very sad that Eric has died. Eric Brought on and I were life long friends, as teen agers we had many adventures together, with the donkey cart from our farm and by dad vannette to Diana's Pool. My sincere condoences to his family Edward Bloomhill. Salisbury UK.)+++++++++CONDOLENCE MESSAGEPEINKE: CLEMENT WATSON
Passed away in Johannesburg 21st September, 2009, aged 76, after a long illnessWill be sorely missed by his wife Jean, children Thelma, Clement and Beverley, Maureen, Bev and Derek, Debra and Tony, Les and Roy and grandchildren Ben, Tess, Keegan, Christian and ClaireMay his dear soul rest in peace.++++++++T
he Petra Trust, Board of Governors and staff extend their sincere condolences to Mr Zhou, Deborah and the family of Mrs Susan Zhou, the much loved librarian of Petra Primary School, who died unexpectedly on Tuesday 22nd September." But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus". 1 Thess 4: 13&14++++++
Frauenstein Robbie who died at East London yesterday morning. Fond memories of our childhood days spent at the North End swimming pool. May he rest in peace, love to Shirley and the family, Alex and Heather Fraser++++++++
Please forward our deepest condolences to Judy and Family on the passing of Mike.Lots of love and prayers,Esme, Les and Sue (Clarke)Aldershot HampshireL Clarke

A Memorial Service

A Memorial Service is to be held for the late Colin Mason, who sadly passed away in Afghanistan on the 16/09/09.
Bulawayo service to be held at 15:00 on Thursday 01/10/09:Presbyterian Church,Cnr Jason Moyo/5th Ave.
A wake will be held at the Tin Cup after the service.Victoria Falls service to be held at 16:00 on Saturday 03/10/09:V ic Falls Boat Club.For any further information please phone Shaun on 011 211117


TAYLOR: To Camilla (nee Rickwood) and Andrew a daughter on 21 September 2009 in Albany, W. Australia. A lovely little sister for Jodie and Emma- and a precious granddaughter for Cynthia. Juliet and Charles

Douse - John and TREVOR PENGILLY

Douse - John. Formerly of Surrey Downs Farm, Marondera North and Agritex Harare. Died peacefully in Suffolk UK after bravely bearing a short illness. Will be missed and remembered with great love by Judy, Graham, Jeremy, Alex and seven grandchildren.


John Douse, formerly of Surrey Downs farm, Marondera North, husband of Judy and father of Graham, Jeremy and Alex and grandfather to many grandchildren died peacefully in his sleep in Bury St Edmunds in the UK at 1.30am on 23/9/09. He had been suffering from heart problems that recently escalated into kidney and liver failure and the discovery of stomach cancer. A good, loving and very generous man who in his later years worked tirelessly to influence in some way the future of agriculture in Zimbabwe for the good of all.

Any condolences please send to;


TREVOR PENGILLY died yesterday Monday 21st after a battle with cancer.

The memorial service will be on Friday 25th at Highlands Presbyterian Church, Enterprise Road at 9 a.m. followed by tea etc at Larmenier Club house. Ladies are asked to bring a plate of snacks.



How short lived the low crime rate report has been …. It’s now on the increase again. The Trust has received reports of both house robberies and attempted hijacking. It seems that new gangs have emerged in areas, and have not always been successful but attempted to gain entry into premises. In most cases the borehole pumps and gate motors with the intercom have been taken or tampered with. We have experienced a lot of powercuts and load shedding again and this always makes it difficult to keep alarms and sensors activated. Be aware of your dogs bark … the tone and urgency will always be a good indicator and raise the alarm, be sensitive to this, but do not open the door or go out to check. You will be a target for the intruders to gain entry and remember all these gangs are armed. If you are away it is wise to make arrangements for your security to be increased or checked at regular intervals in your absence. It is a big responsibility to be left entirely to the staff, make it possible for them to also have a backup plan to fall on.
Attempted hijacking seem to be in progress by stopping or jamming the electric gate from opening fully, be alerted and do not get out to check what is stopping the gate. Call for assistance, or hoot continually, raising the alarm for help. These arbitrators will have a getaway car in the vicinity waiting to give them assistance and therefore just watching for a wrong move. These gangs are also fully armed. We suggest that you do not always take the same route home at the same hour every day as you may be under surveillance and your pattern watched and noted. Keep vigilant whilst travelling and do not drive into your entrance if you see any strange activity or too many people loitering around the area. It is known fact that we have a large percentage of unemployed desperate people in Zimbabwe just looking out for a gap in security. Vehicles theft of Lancruisers is ongoing and the areas affected Borrowdale and Mount Pleasant, robberies and other incidents in Emerald Hill, Greystone Park, Bluff Hill and Westgate.
.Summer is upon us so be sure to use your security gates when opening doors for the cool air and alarm activated in places that are not being used. Please remember to close windows when leaving an area, this is often the entry post.
Let’s ALL fight this crime together - stay ALERT and SAFE !

TEL/FAX: HARARE 04-309870/309800 /091 2 221 921 Email: or

Maureen (Mo) Horne

A memorial service for the late Maureen (Mo) Horne will be held at Highlands Presbyterian Church on Friday 2 October at 11 am - all friends welcome. email contact : (helen van rensburg)

Monday, September 28, 2009

fire lighters

Have you noticed that although there are a lot of clean up efforts takingplace which in itself is a noble cause, inspite of this the city AIR isgetting more POLUTED.
It does make me wonder if this is really good for the environment? Have you noticed the smog from the proliferation ofbushfires/rubish fires in all the suburbs and outlying areas surounding thecity? This surely is not good for our health as i have also notice thatthere daily is a fine dusting of ashes and or charred grasses on my vehicle,and blown in to the bathroom, are we not inhaling all this stuff? In all mylife living here I have never seen polution at this level in Bulawayo! I myself also adding to the bad air by lighting a fire to burn what city councilhave not collected for weeks or months. Are we the residents with yard spacein a better position to reduce our carbon emmissions and save ourenvironment by being diligent at making it a practice to compost all ourkitchen waste, yard trimmings and any other biodegradeable recyleable waste.AND SEE BYO RECLAIM ITS TRULY CLEAN REPUTATION!
worried citizen

Missing Hospital!

Reprinted from the Bulawayo Morning Mirror
Imagine losing a Bulawayo hospital!? A whole building! A hospital where thousands of children - me included - were born. You think it's impossible? Believe me when I say...until recently it was swallowed up by the Ethernet of time and might have been lost forever.BUT...we found it. In Bulawayo where it always was. Derelict, run down, left to decay! Admittedly, it was an old hospital that began its remarkable journey way back in 1910 or thereabouts. And it ceased to a hospital perhaps 50 years later. So why did it get lost?Probably because it never was a registered hospital. And it took a lot of fascinating people to add to the mystery before that was known.So let me thank you - those who helped find it - and let me add - for anyone who reads this - why finding the hospital was important....please bear with me.Thanks to...Mags Kriel for having the temerity to run a Bulawayo newspaper which I can confirm gets all over the world. I know because I received help from readers of the newspaper - all over the world.Thanks too to my Hospital angel...Leila Hunt, special girl, who did all the legwork, despite red herrings...took photographs, found plans, the research, dug up the archives and the undercover stuff in the dusty backrooms and cellars of Bulawayo and found the lion's share of the answer to my mystery. She didn't know me from a lump of coal. My admiration for her is without dimension. And not forgetting Leila's inside source, Mrs Mabena at the Historic History Library in Bulawayo.AND...lets not forget, Adrian M, Betty C, Bob R, Debbie, Delvine A, Derek B, Dermot, Dianne E, Eddy N, Ellen Mc, Genevieve, James B, Jean T, Les M, Peter E, and Rob H. and Bothwell at Town far. These are people who read the article and responded from - get this! - US, UK, Australia, South Africa, Middle East, New Zealand, Canada and even one who wrote (e-mail) to me while flying over the Atlantic! And of course Zimbabwe which - with my old school atlas I still cannot find. Mine says Rhodesia. Must get a new one. They all added bits and pieces of long lost information to the enigma.You see, I was looking for the hospital where I was born In Bulawayo. And it was gone! All I had was a name: Sister Roux Nursing Home. I drew a real blank. Slowly drips and drabs, the information arrived.You understand back in those days a midwife was worth her weight in gold. Sister Roux was my delivery angel. Let's face it; many Rhodesians (my Grandmother included) were born at home with the help of hot water and the next door neighbour!!! So a midwife was an absolute blessing.But, she moved in to 59a and b Fort Street, organised the place, let it be known what she could do...and got on and did it. Sister Roux the Maternity fundi, became its unopposed leader. She began delivering babies (Please! There were NO doctors then and Bulawayo had a population of less than 2000 in the early 1900) from the get go. It wasn't long before 59a with just 4 beds, where maternity activity was taking place was referred to as Sister Roux's Nursing Home. Makes sense to me!And so it emerged. The readers- when they heard my plight - from all over the world searched their memories and scrambled to ask the really really old folk, Mom's mainly...who recall the naturally painful experience of bringing their children into this world at the Sister Roux Nursing Home. There were some blanks. But then some confirmed its existence. 'YES! It was a building - red brick (later painted white) white pillars in the front - red corrugated roof. It was on Fort Street.'Yes, the road outside was Fort Street, red, rich earth that ran with mud, donkey, horse and cattle droppings when it rained and raised a haze of dust when it didn't. On either side of Fort Street were - of course - jacaranda saplings that had yet to produce their first blooms. Inside, confident Sister Roux welcomed out of breath moms-to-be and wide eyed dads-to-be with efficient instructions. Measured control!If I am alone, quiet and thoughtful I can see - in my mind's eye - my mom and dad walking through those gates and into the entrance of the little Nursing Home...but that wasn't until 1944, and things were more primitive before I arrived. It was an austere interior, painted white enamel and without trimmings or decoration at all. Steel-frame black, shiny beds. White hand stitched no-nonsense sheets, coir mattresses and pillows filled with untreated cotton balls. Mother's today would run a mile!!Privacy was at a premium just 4 beds two either side ...and you know that gliding modern surrounding curtain bed square?...well back then it was just a makeshift series of sheets, safety-pins joined together and then held by Sister Bedpan and Sister Kidney-Bowl whilst Sister Roux went about her serious business of shouting for 'more hot water'.Then came the stillness of day or night broken only by the sounds of a new born mite announcing that another life had arrived at the Sister Roux Nursing Home. Ten fingers ten toes.Of course there were problems, never enough equipment, and lack of electricity (1897 was the first) or what little there was had to be directed at the emergency apparatus. And of course us humans - being human - there occasionally came to the entrance a desperate husband and wife who whispered in tears that they had a daughter who was, is, must be,....but isn't... married...and is pregnant.So, 59b which was the next door house where Sister Roux and her trainees, lived, slept, were on call 24/7 now also made arrangements for unwed mothers to find a be seen but not somewhat cramped conditions...and to have their babies without too much fuss. Or joy.How times have changed.In those days the Sister Roux Nursing Home looked out onto Fort Street and the block itself was lodged between 4th and 5th Streets,And so us babies of Bulawayo arrived into this world with the admirable help of Sister Roux. There were no real hospital regulations, had she not been trained things might have been different, but, those of us who are here - because of her - can attest that she must have been pretty good at what she did, and very efficient. Hopefully she is at peace wherever she is. Her Nursing Home is remembered.Eventually the trees outside grew, the road was tarred, and regulations were written to include a doctor in attendance...perhaps because Sister Roux was getting on a little. Equipment was upgraded, electricity was cleaner and the odd rumble of a car or a truck went by to add to the sounds of sparrows and blue jays in the massive lilac topped trees outside. And, in the early summer of 1944, I was born there.So why all the fuss?When you lose your birthplace feel empty. It's a borrowed existence. Temporary. Uncertain, lacking in confidence when people say... 'I'm an American,,, I'm an Englishman.' And you think...well I'm not sure. Don't even know where I was born. When you find it again, there's remarkable sense of relief and attachment.I don't live in Bulawayo or any other city or town nearby. But my desire to return and feel that washed down, comfortable sense of belonging, of finding my footprints in the rich red earth on Fort Street is so strong, it's difficult to put into words. But I speak for many when I say, having witnessed all I have in that part of the world in recent years... on behalf of the dispossessed... 'Next Year in Rhodesia!'Graham. KingFoot note: Sister Roux passed away in about 1960. If you find her grave please put one of your flowers against its headstone and whisper thanks from me. The Nursing Home and its adjacent look-alike were left empty and fell into disrepair when the bigger hospitals (Lady Rodwell and Mater Dei) took over the intake...and when things changed in the country the little brick and tin roof buildings were temporarily taken over - as some believe - by the ladies of the night. Squatters live there now. So... if you go past them in Fort Street, spare a thought for Sister Roux and all of us who arrived in Bulawayo inside those once remarkable walls.Gray King mailto:sirgraymail%40gmail.comA picture of the Sister Roux Hospital is on the website

Thursday, September 24, 2009



Kevin Cooke

0912414586/7 or 011611353

Beige Land Cruiser pick up

Hunting bars and seat on back

Extra 130L tank in back.

Farm radio base set in front and broken back right light.

Reg: ABE 8435

Chassis # JTELB71J507074296

Engine # IH2 - 0583140

RRB # 0698693

Taken from 26 Windmill Lane at 0400 hrs on Wed 23rd. The vehicle was locked with solex locks, alarmed by remote, gear locked and had a cut out switch that would stall the vehicle in 2 mins if you don't know where the cut out switch is........It didn't stop them.

Destruction of the last bastion of teaming wildlife in Zimbabwe

Destruction of the last bastion of teaming wildlife in Zimbabwe after over 60% of the National Heard of wildlife was eliminated in the last 10 years

A blatant attempt to expropriate foreign and locally owned properties in all private Wildlife Conservancies

Issuing 25 year leases to anyone but existing owners is expropriation and flies in the face of current law and the GPA

High profile International Court cases will not follow

Cabinet Ministers are directly involved in handing out leases to people other than title holders. Minister Nehma, Mudenge and Governor Maluleke are orchestrating the "land grab"

Mudenge and Maluleke have both forced themselves into such `partnerships' with ZIC approved and foreign owned properties, another leading example of a corrupt Government in disregard of local law, International Law and ZIC approved investments

Foreign investors will finally have lost faith in the promises of Zimbabwe's Government

The President, Prime Minster, deputy Prime Ministers and Ministers making statements at recent investment conference are made a laughing stock with total loss of credibility locally and globally

The GNU is seen to have no control over rogue members of Cabinet or adherence to law and order

"eye witness report":

The meeting started at 10:55am. It was attended by about 40 persons. It was difficult for me to keep account of who was representing the Government or who was a "new partner" forced on to the Conservancies. Few people representation the Conservancies were present on such short notice.

It was interesting to note that UNDP funded the workshop, their representative was present but we were unable to confirm his name. These funds would have been negotiated by Vitalis Chadenga, deputy director of National Parks. What a gross misuse of overseas Investors' tax moneys!

This "workshop" is clearly a Masvingo initiative, planned over a longer period of time, meant to overwhelm us with extremely short notice. However, Minister Nhema, Minister Murewha, the two ministries responsible to central government for the implementation of government policy in this regard, were absent, although Minister Muzembi who is from Masvingo and was invited to address the meeting sent a junior representative to deliver his speech, which focused mainly on the important roll the tourism industry can have in the recovery of Zimbabwe, but that it needed to maintain investor confidence.

The meeting followed the usual pattern where each person had to introduce themselves. As most of them spoke very quietly, it was difficult for me to establish, who was who.

The Provincial Manager for National Parks, a Mr. Gotosa, Director of National Parks Vitalis Chidenga, Minister Stan Mudenge, Ministry of Tourism Mr. Mavavhombu, Provincial Administrator Chikovo, and Masvingo's Governor Mululeke, sat at the main table.

Chidenga opened the meeting by saying that some people had been given leases and that this Workshop was to discuss how to run wildlife businesses between the old and new partners. Wild life needed protection and understanding and that with no wild life there was nothing to do business with.

Col. Mokova, (new partner, Savuli, southern neighbour to Sango in the Save Valley Conservancy), wanted to know when they could move on and start business. Chidenga replied that they must have an agreement with the present operator first.

Minister Mudenge then opened the meeting. He said that this was the second meeting of the old and new partners, together they must discuss conservancies. No mention made of these partners being forced onto existing owners and the effect this would have on foreign owned properties (about 70% across the Conservancies). This was part and parcel of the land reform process, he said. Government did not rush this. New partners wanted to do this quickly. Government was aware of the delicacy and complexity, but stated that, we now have a new wild life policy.

Old and New operators would have 25 year leases. They would be partners in business and would need to provide the Ministry of Environment with a business plan. New partners should bring something to the table (referring to paying for their part of the business). Business principles should be adhered to. Government has learnt from the Land Reform Program and realize that this type of partnership has the best chance of working. Zimbabwe is part of the Trans Frontier Conservation Area, and making these partnerships work would show the rest of the world that we can work together. Again, no mention was made of the fact that the Wild Life and Tourism Industry is indigenised well above 80% across the whole country.

The Tourism representative, Mr. Mavavhombu (his name sounded Mazombu), read a speech on behalf of the Minister Walter Mazembi. The speech was positive and he pointed out all the good tourism can do for the country, the need to protect wildlife, encourage business and investors'
confidence, etc.

National Parks then gave a brief slide presentation. Issues, concerns and expectations of Wild Life Management. It covered topics of more equity, maintaining investors' confidence etc. Their concerns were, poaching, habitat destruction, gold panning, lack of skills, illegal settlement, negative publicity, etc. (They have promised to let me have the presentations by email).

Mr. Chibere, National Parks, then presented a business prospective, hunting administration, presentation. He pointed out the decline in hunting revenues over the last few years, that tourism was driven by consumptive and non consumptive business. He gave an example of the value of elephant. He then presented a typical hunting concession quota.
He demonstrated the value and then showed the costs pertaining to running a hunting business, very little profit left yet some costs as to fence maintenance and anti-poaching control were not even included. His point came across very well in that new entrants should not expect huge profits and that there were serious responsibilities to wild life management.

There was then a lunch break.

The meeting resumed with four questions for discussion.

How do we ensure business viability (it was agreed that this was a vast/complex topic and would need more time than available to come up with complete answers)

How to ensure adherence to indigenization and wild life land reform implementation policy options.

Strategies for seamless entries of new partners and communities into the wild life business. (What strategies do we adopt to ensure the smooth introduction of the WLRP.)

What measures to be taken to address settlers on wild life land. I.e. how do we address the illegal settlement in the conservancies?

Mudenge was quick to say that we (his side of the political arena) should not enter in to areas where angels fear to tread and told the Governor and the attending MP's to sort out. Therefore, this sensitive issue was not his mandate but he placed it on the governor's desk. We see a cynical strategy here in that this is going to be left for the incoming governor to deal with. It will put this emotional land issue squarely on the shoulders of the new MDC governor, which could be a strategy to build an alliance with the 50 or 60 new partners and the 10,000 illegal settlers to challenge the GNU.

These questions caused much discussion. Your email had been read by some members from the floor and MP Ndava. (New partner Bedford Block) wanted to know what rights foreign investors had to tell Zimbabwe what to do, they impose sanctions and want to be protected, etc. ? Minister Mudenge told him that a way had to be found, that the Government was committed to the land reform and that leases had been issued (at this point the provincial administrator put a pile of envelopes on the table).

The meeting also recognized that the new partners/operators needed Government assistance to empower them. Mudenge discussed them receiving animals, buffalo or elephant to pay for partnerships irrespective of the fact that National Parks have lost most of their animals through mismanagement and Conservancies having an overabundance of elephants and planes game. Again, reality was not the topic of the day.

Closing remarks were then given by Governor Mulaleke. He said that today was a land mark meeting of old and new safari operators. This, the second meeting, now made formal the wild life business with new partners.
All land was now State Property. Existing partners must now recognize new partners. New partners must now be prepared to invest before generating income. He was happy with the Government donating wild life to business. Government wants viability and profitability. He had been working towards this for a long time.

Most new partners are keen to proceed with haste and although a little disappointed from the viability presented by Chipere from National Parks, they are relaxed due to the fact that they believe Government will assist in their cost of buy in. This will give them a seat on the board so they can understand how the industry works, and may get something out in the process, if government puts up all the equity, what is there to lose.

The new partners were then told to step forward to collect and sign for their new leases.

I was not able to get a list of who these leases were given to, or to see a lease. One of the new partners confirmed on my questioning that the lease was from the Ministry of Environment, signed by Minister Nhema.

We have spoken to Chadenga on the need for a small technical group to meet as soon as possible to discuss the technical aspects of, and, the international implications of this move. Such as, companies have "sanctioned" partners, BIPA and ZIA agreements, the conservancy's indigenization plan, which has not been commented on, etc. Chadenga did not appear very concerned about these issues.

The tone of the meeting was very friendly and cordial. None of the previous underlying threats were felt. Everybody seemed very confident with governments' ability to make the process happen. It is difficult to pick up the tone of a meeting from somebody else's minutes, but Chadenga, Minister Mudenge, the Governor, were all almost jovial and any negative comments coming from the floor were quickly commented on and brushed aside. They know exactly what they are doing and will not be deterred.

Government is very aware that the farm disruptions have made international news and also more importantly have been a complete failure. This new type of "friendly" "land-grab"
is their mark 2 version of land reform. This appeases the party faithful, who need the extra properties to add to their portfolio of business and from a distance looks reasonable to the uninformed. They feel that it is their right to indigenize the business and this way of doing it will supposedly keep tourism working and make them wealthy participants.

Our feeling is that no reasonable discussion, sanctions lists, diplomatic intervention, etc. will persuade them not to do this. They already clearly know that this is against the agreement made for the Government of National Unity, but that very Government is seen powerless to stop them. Minister Nhema signing these leases means that he is confident in the support which he has, so although this has not been discussed in parliament, he understands that he is protected and has the backing needed.

Friday, September 18, 2009

the late Les Dunlop

Dear Old Georgians,

A memorial service for the late Les Dunlop (class of 80) will be held at 11am at Highlands Presbyterian Church, Enterprise Road, Highlands, Harare tomorrow, Friday 18 September 2009.

Please accept this intimation.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

KARORI Farm update

KARORI Farm update



Brigadier Mujaji has stolen four tractors and all our seedbeds. He has now planted our seedlings in lands we prepared and fertilized.

Our workers have been denied access to food now for two weeks. In desperation they tried to access the premises but the soldiers opened fire and shot one worker in the hand by ricochet. We have tried to move our crops and equipment off the farm but we are now being denied this by the army. The lorry drivers were threatened with death by the soldiers if they attempted to move any of our goods. The police have supported the fact that we can move our crops and equipment as it belongs to me and they have tried to send staff to the scene to help but the soldiers have threatened them and they left waiting further instruction from their superiors. We are waiting to see now what happens. It is one thing taking land, but another stealing crops, equipment, and shooting innocent people through force of arms by our own national army.

Charles Lock - Headlands



Latest tactics is to add more land onto his allocation and threatened to
take the farm equipment on "his" side of the fence he is to erect. This
is the pump house and main transformer

He had a bunch of Vapostori yesterday showing them the pump house in great detail.

We hear he is allocating plots to these guys and more.. as he is not a farmer

The Milling shed is progressing at Hunters front gate next to the main transformer

We got a letter signed at Marondera yesterday to confirm all the transformers were in our name.

Other issues are in the pipe line, remain Clandestine at this moment

Well the weekend saw more sand for the mill by Shumba and he has put in heaps of poles for the fence on the side of the strip road where he has decided to claim more land !

He still controls the pump house and the river pump which has been wasting huge amounts of water under his control or Rather lack of control

We have not done any land prep for the coming season as we are unsure what is happening on the farm


Well the weekend saw more sand for the mill by Shumba and he has put in haeps of poles for the fence on the side of the strip road where he has decided to claim more land !

He still controls the pump house and the river pump which has been wasting huge ammounts of water unfder his control or Rather lack of control

We have not done any land prep for the coming season as we are unsure what is happening on the farm

Dennis Lapham - Enterprise

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

MDC gets Tough

We are just back from a rally to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the MDC - we formed the Party ten years ago today! The rally was the biggest we have had in Bulawayo since we formed the Party and the entire leadership was present.

The rally was preceded by meetings of the National Executive and Council and in those meetings it was decided that the MDC would have to toughen its stance in the transitional government.

The President, Morgan Tsvangirai, will now meet Mr. Mugabe on Monday and tell him that the National Leadership has resolved to give their Zanu PF counterparts one week to begin to implement the full demands of the Global Political Agreement. In addition, the structures of the Party have been instructed to go back to the rank and file and ask them if it was not time to reconsider our participation in the Transitional Government.

This tougher stance was triggered by several events in the past week or so. First, at the SADC Heads of State summit in the Congo, Mr. Mugabe made a five hour speech in which he stated that the parties to the GPA were working well together and there were no serious problems. Secondly, we felt that our willingness to compromise to try and make this deal work was being misconstrued as compliance and that this impression had to be corrected.

But perhaps the most important challenge came from the ordinary members of the Party who felt that the failure to get Zanu PF to play its part in the Transitional Government was stalling recovery and normalisation. It was felt that after the early progress brought about largely by MDC reforms and their presence in the government, that the economy was still in deep trouble and that social service recovery was a long way off.

Zanu PF procrastination was impeding progress on all fronts; in the constitutional reform process the attitude of Zanu PF leadership was holding up progress and their demands that we short circuit the process and accept the Kariba Draft, was totally unacceptable. The failure to consult on all major decisions and to unilaterally appoint people to posts in violation of the GPA had now gone too far and was not tolerable.

Then there are the issues of the failure to effect agreed reforms to repressive legislation and to open up the media. The failure to halt the issuance of hate speech and the public denigration of the MDC and its leadership and the one sided application of the law to MDC legislators where 29 MP's and Senators are now either in court or already convicted on fabricated grounds.

The statement on Saturday when Mr. Mugabe met the high level delegation from the EU in Harare that "we have implemented the GPA and therefore that sanctions should be withdrawn" met with little acceptance. His case was not helped by an irresponsible and unlawful statement the previous day at the Zanu PF Youth Congress to the effect that the "bloody whites" had no place in Zimbabwean affairs and that remaining white farmers had to leave their farms or face eviction by force by the Police.

Such rhetoric has no place in a modern society. Zanu PF racism has gone too far this time. In the past Mr. Mugabe has always been careful to maintain some dignity in his public utterances and then done just what he wants behind closed doors. The continuing attacks on white farmers are now blatantly racist and illegal, even in terms of the present law in Zimbabwe.

MDC responded by abandoning its previous stance that the so called land reform exercise was "irreversible". The National Executive now states that the Zanu PF "fast track land reform programme" has been unacceptable and will require a comprehensive review and change. The reality is that if the rule of law is restored in Zimbabwe, the new Courts will rule in favour of the farmers and holders of private property rights. Then what do we do? Anyway the present attacks on remaining farms are irresponsible in the face of a situation where we are being forced to import 80 per cent of our food.

Zanu PF has to ask itself now, "what happens if the Transitional Government" collapses?". Make no mistake; it will not be back to normal business and looting for the Zanu PF thugs. SADC would have no alternative but to become engaged and this time there would be no Mbeki to protect Zanu PF interests. MDC's position would be quite simple
- let's go back to the people and settle this once and for all.

For Zanu PF that is the very last thing they want - they and Mutambara want the present Transitional arrangements to last for five years in the hope that MDC will screw up and they can benefit from the gradual recovery that is under way. They also hope that by the end of the five year term new leadership might be in place in Zanu PF and they might be able to reenergise the Party. There is no hope for Mutambara unless the present arrangement persists.

So on Monday the other two partners in the Transitional Government face a "High Noon, Main Street" moment. Morgan Tsvangirai will confront clever Dick and the Botox man with the demand that they live up to the deal they signed a year ago in Harare. They know what that entails and although they might shrink back from such a demand, the alternative is worse; it's a stay of execution for at least a year.

Sitting in the crowd and watching the rally run its course, I felt so proud of the thousands of ordinary people who have fought for the past decade for freedom, democracy, security and safety and a better standard of life and have done so without violence. What an example they are to the world in which we live where so often such disputes and conflicts are resolved by violence and murder.

Morgan summed it all up when he said "before God I pledge that I will not rest or retire until we have brought our promise of a future we can all believe in to fruition in Zimbabwe". When he asked the crowd if they would join him in that struggle, there was a roar of assent. I could feel the apprehension in Shake Shake building in Harare.

Eddie Cross

Bulawayo, 14th September 2009

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Latest domestic notices

In memory of Mike Edwards 1942 - September 1994: Honorary Game ranger Hwange National Park, Co-Founder HwangeConservation Society:There are times when my heart so hurts just for one more chance to be able to talk to you or just to see you,i would love the chance to tell you face to face "hey I love you dad" to show you my grandchildren, your greatgrandchildren, I would love the chance to show you where and how we now live, to be able to phone you, to gently teaseyou, I am so very glad that we spoke and shared stories, those do help. But most of all, I am so very glad that you weremy dad, my friend, my protector, and fishing partner. I miss you dad, and every year seems to get harder. I love you and am proudto have been your daughterUrsula DareUnited kingdom+++++++++++++
Please pass on to Judy and Family our deepest condolences on the passing away of Mike Phillipson.Love and sympathyPauline and Edward Bloomhill,Salisbury UK++++
Win passed away peacefully on 28th August, 2009 at Edith Duly. Lovingly remembered by Anne and Mark and their families.Memorial service to be held on Monday 13th September, 2009 at 10.00 am at Farleys Chapel.+++++Leslie Clark, Lithographer, of Bradfield and Hillside Bulawayo, and latterly of Harrogate England passed into the presence of the Lord on Tuesday 25th August 2009.Much loved husband and sorely missed by Lettie, of 50 Knaresborough Rd Harrogate HG2 7LU England.Loving Father and Grandpa of Keith, Michael, Ian and their families, deeply saddened by their loss.+++++Mike PhillipsonDeepest Sympathy to Judy, Debbie, Eric and Family on the passing of a great man, husband, father, grandfather and friend. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all ....Love The Blairs (John and hazel, Cheryl and Gordon and Tracy

Sunday, September 13, 2009

This is how we live!

While President Robert Mugabe welcomed senior European Union officials to Zimbabwe “with great expectations” and hoped their talks would be “fruitful with a positive outcome”, the havoc wrought by senior Zanu PF officials in the commercial farming sector continues to escalate.

At Friedawil farm near Chinhoyi, about 100 kilometres north of Harare, Edward Mashiringwani, a deputy governor of the Reserve Bank, has once again moved onto the farm with about 15 guards who beat up one of the resident guards.

“They arrived mid morning Friday and began targeting our senior staff, issuing threats and chasing them away,” said Louis Fick, who is struggling to maintain farming operations due to continuous harassment.

Mashiringwani’s employees have also locked the gates leading to the pigsties and crocodile enclosures and are refusing to allow food and water to be taken to the animals.

“This has gone on for two days now and the situation is desperate,” said Fick.

“We have about 1 000 pigs at this stage and ten sows are in maternity. There are also about 100 piglets, some just a few days old, the rest under three weeks. It’s essential for them to get food and water,” he stressed. “Pigs in maternity need about 40 litres of water a day.”

The worst part for Fick is that there is no one for him to turn to.

“I can’t begin to describe what I feel,” he said. “Eventually the police came out after a long struggle but any members who tried to assist were reprimanded. The animals should be beyond politics but they are used as pawns in the game.”

The situation is a virtual replay of April 2008 when Mashiringwani attempted to take over the farm, forcing Fick’s workers to leave and refusing to allow his livestock to be fed and watered.

At that point Fick had more than 4 000 pigs, 15 000 crocodiles and several hundred beef cattle.

In desperation he called in the Zimbabwe National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, who were inundated with distress calls, but when they tried to enter the farm, they were prevented from doing so by Mashiringwani’s men.

As a result 30 sows died due to dehydration and some became so crazed they ate their own little piglets.

According to neighbours, the sounds emanating from the farm on that occasion were horrifying and Fick and his workers were severely traumatised.

Friedawil is one of more than 70 Zimbabwean commercial farms protected by the landmark Southern African Development Community (SADC) Tribunal ruling of 28 November 2008 – Fick is the 7th applicant on the list.

Fick and his wife Lisette are the main shareholders of the company farming Friedawil and the livestock belongs to the company.

Fick is a South African citizen but has had no assistance from the South African government, although he has kept the South African embassy in Zimbabwe fully informed of the ongoing property rights and human rights violations.

On August 1, 2008, a Pretoria judge took the South African government to task for not protecting the rights of a citizen whose farms had been nationalised in Zimbabwe.

Free State farmer Crawford von Abo won his court battle against the then President, Thabo Mbeki, the Foreign Minister, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and the Trade and Industry Minister, Mandisi Mpahlwa, to get compensation from the South African government

Judge Bill Prinsloo noted that the government’s excuses for lack of action over the previous six years had been “feeble” and pointed out that Germany, France and Denmark had intervened successfully of behalf of their citizens who owned agricultural land in Zimbabwe.

Independent analysts are concerned that the South African government’s failure to protect its citizens’ rights in Zimbabwe will impact on the confidence levels of potential overseas investors.

On Friday, South Africa and the European Union signed an amended trade, development and co-operation agreement and pledged to bridge the outstanding gaps in the negotiations. It is important for South Africa to maintain credibility.

In Zimbabwe, the Bilateral Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement (BIPPA) with South Africa has become a contentious issue as a result of delays in signing the agreement. This has led to millions of dollars of potential credit to Zimbabwe being frozen.

Zimbabwe’s Justice and Legal Affairs Minister, Patrick Chinamasa, said recently that his government was prepared to sign BIPPAs with South Africa - or any other country - as long as they did not result in the reversal of “land reform”.

Claims by President Mugabe and his Zanu PF ministers that the land reform programme benefits landless black people are not borne out by the long list of beneficiaries of stolen commercial farms.

The so-called ‘chefs’ involved in the ongoing and violent land grab are an elite of ministers (and in some cases also their wives and girlfriends), senior security force officers, Politburo members, their family members and even judges.

The vast majority have no knowledge of, or interest in farming and many are fully employed in lucrative jobs, hence their being dubbed “cell phone farmers”.

Their main activities have been to asset strip the farms and to sell crops that were planted by the farmers to help feed and sustain the nation. As a result, many once productive farms are now lying derelict, and with homesteads, worker villages, factories and sheds – such as those of Mike Campbell, who initiated the landmark SADC Tribunal court case with his son-in-law, Ben Freeth - burnt to the ground.

For further information:

Louis Fick
Cell: +263 11 216 062
Contact numbers:

Edward Mashiringwani
Deputy Governor
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe
Cell: +263 11 800 582

Shepherd Makoni
Manager for Mr Mashiringwani
Cell: +263 912 967 386

Friday, September 11, 2009

Stockdale Citrus

Stockdale Citrus

As the SADC summit draws to a close which has rattled the government cage there are ashes in the Chegutu area which no arrests will be made On Stockdale citrus estate where Edna Madzongwe has illegally taken the farm and stolen the export oranges some of which were supplied to Mazoe Citrus estate (Mazoe orange juice) Senator Madzongwe's son Valentine has stolen a four trax motor bike from the residence of Peter Etheredge The motor bike is currently parked at the house where they are living a report was made to the local police but NO arrests have been made Etheredge is a SADC member farmer who has the Protection of the SADC Tribunal ruling which the treaty was signed by the Zimbabwe president in 1992


Passed away in the early hours of Thursday 10th September after a long and courageous battle against cancer. She was an inspiration to all who knew and worked with her.

A memorial service will be held next week.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Isak De Beer Steenkamp

Isak De Beer Steenkamp

A Funeral Service to celebrate the life of Isak will be held at The Dutch Reform Church, Hillside, on Wednesday, 9th September, 2009 at 2.30 pm.

This will be followed by a Wake at City Bowling Club, Park Lane.

No flowers by request. Donations instead to SPCA.

He will be sadly missed by his wife, Petal (Wilna), family and friends.


Pippa Cory 0912-353776,

Hannejtje Henrico


Karori Farm

1. Situation on Karori Farm got a whole lot worse. Mujaji and his wife have seized all our tobacco seedbeds and planting equipment including

4 tractors and started planting in the lands we prepared and fertilized.
They broke into the office and stole two shotguns and all our security equipment. All the workers are locked out now for two weeks and they have tried to evict them over the weekend but failed.

Police just take reports but no action. We still cannot move 400 tons of maize and 150 tons of tobacco locked up in main premises. Mujaji says I can take my crops if I sign over the farm no problem but not my equipment. Court orders are irrelevant. Any suggestions on what to do


2. Here Could not be worse !!!!!

Shumba smashed the lock on the Gate to our house last night Sat at 7 pm.

We have had no Power as he switched off and no Water for the last two weeks! Our Dogs here with the Hunters.

Am being charged with sect 41b for asking safeguard Security to get the address for serving civil court papers on him!!

Now this charge changed to 45 Intimidation?? The most incredible case ever..... He is intimidating me with all his actions that the Police turn a blind eye to.

Have Lawyer Godfrey Mamvura to represent me tomorrow [Mon ]

He is running the water and a lot of waste is occurring as they are not reacting to the power cuts. We are helpless with the pump houses both under his Lock & key!

He is busy fencing where HE thinks the boundary should be?

We do not know what to do on the farming side? Three months of this harassment and uncertainty, we have endured.


ENGAGEMENT - Kaye - Eddie and Cameron


Kaye - Eddie and Cameron

Gordon and Sue Kay-Eddie & John and Rose Cameron have great pleasure in announcing the engagement of Kate to Brett on the 25th August 2009.

Congratulations to the two of you.

Friday, September 4, 2009

More farm murders

And so this goes on ----- we hear little about many of these horrific things!
There was another horrific and barbaric murder of 75-year old Mrs Sophia Hart on their smallholding outside Kadoma this week. Although the motive of the murder is not known it is suspected that those involved were after cash, which she did not tell them where it was kept. Our deepest condolences go to the family especially the well-known safari operator and farmer, Mr Wynand Hart.

Latest condolences

WINIFRED GERTRUDE SALTER Win passed away peacefully on 28th August, 2009 at Edith Duly. Lovingly remembered by Anne and Mark and their families. Memorial service to be held on Monday 13th September, 2009 at 10.00 am at Farleys Chapel.
The memorial service for Mike Phillipson will be on Tuesday the 8th September at 3.30 pm at the Chuch of Ascension Leander Ave
+++++++ Leslie Clark, Lithographer, of Bradfield and Hillside Bulawayo, and latterly of Harrogate England passed into the presence of his Lord on Tuesday 25th August 2009. Much loved husband and sorely missed by Lettie, of 50 Knaresborough Rd Harrogate HG2 7LU England. Loving Father and Grandpa of Keith, Michael, Ian and their families, deeply saddened by their loss.
Our loss is heavens gain+++++++
HAWXBY - Blanche, passed away peacefully in the early hours on Sunday the 30 August. She will be sadly missed by John, Yvonne, and Ve, grand children Garth and Ali, Lauren, Graham and Joanna, and greatgrand children Sav and Tyla.
HAWXBY - Blanche, our deepest sympathy at your loss. Love Jenny and Gordon,Fiona, Stephen Daniel and Clair.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

West View Old Age Home in Kadoma

West View Old Age Home in Kadoma I am collecting food stuffs, meat, vegetables, and toiletries such as toilet rolls, bath soap, toothpaste, tooth brushes etc to take to West View Old Age Home in Kadoma. This home is in desperate need of meat, vegetables and toiletries. There are approximately 40 - 50 old folk there. Please can you dig deep into your hearts and pockets for anything to make their lives (what's left of them) a bit easier. I am going there on Saturday morning so if you have anything please can I have it by Friday. Please contact Debbie on 0912 603 847 or email

Ivan Struik

It was with regret that we learnt of the death of our friend and fellow member, Ivan Struik on 16 August, 2009 in South Africa where he was receiving treatment. Our deepest sympathy to Lynett and the families.

Committee, Members and Staff of the Zimbabwe Hunters' AssociationP. O Box HG 548 Highlands Harare.16 Walter Hill Avenue Eastlea Harare

Phone 04 704978 or 707306Cell: 0912 329434

Wednesday, September 2, 2009



As I read today about the latest atrocity suffered by Ben Freeth and his family I am yet again appalled at the situation there. I don't know how much more can be said about lawlessness, the lack of action by the government, the police. Perhaps that is futile.

What can be said is that people like Ben Freeth deserve our prayers, deserve support and deserve tough no nonsense action from SADC. Let's hope Jacob Zuma was not pulling any punches last week and that he now does something for African democracy.

And if anyone is making medals get one the size of a frying pan for Ben Freeth.

Ade Williams.



Submission by Dennis Lapham (Born 6/2/42 Rusape) Ref Devonia South

Farmed in Bindura from 1974 On Robara farm which we purchased .

Owing to the development of Cluff Gold Mine on the property we had to make way for this development and sold to immediately buy Devonia South in 1990 with a certificate of No interest by the government. Paid 30% capital Gains Tax

Pannar requested a Trial site in 1994 which we agreed to, under our preparations.

Farm Invasions in 1999 disrupted the programme and in 2000 we were evicted for 40 days but allowed to return.

6th Nov 2002 the farm acquired by Govt [Made letter ] and "given "to Pannar who asked us to continue to run the farm for them and produce Seed crops, Soya, Sorghum, Sugar beans, Wheat, with Maize being the main focus .

We then paid gratuity to all farm Labour with change in the operating company.

With inflation two years ago we were paid US$9.60 per Tonne for Seed Maize, which was a major financial disaster for us. Last year our plantings were down due to the Zesa shortage and again this year.

We were allocated 127 Ha on 27th Feb 2003 ( Case No LA 2751/02) after a court set down which included our homesteads and sheds on the property.
We do not have own any Houses in town. This allowed us security to

We wrote in response to the Sect 7 listing of Devonia Sept 2004 Delivered to Minister of Lands.

We then wrote to Special Affairs in Jan 2005 with this information, Hand delivered to Mr. Mutsonziwa 13/1/05 We never got any replies

Temba Nkatazo the GM of Pannar assured us that all was in order.

Herbert Shumbamhini { HS } who I met for the first time with Bhika, Goromonzi lands Officer and from Min of lands, Matimba, Mugabe (planner) and Guramombe on the farm on June 2nd to say Marondera had proposed he is given 353.5 Ha of land

HS reiterated that he did not want to touch any of our crops or will take our House.

He wanted a good relationship.

Nkatazo said he would handle this as he wanted as much Maize Seed to be grown as possible. We are the only growers of PAN 53 which requires a zero plus 4 plus 4 day split in two male and the female plantings. Two male & four female lines. Their excellent high yielding variety.

We have had our water to the homestead severely curtailed, with only three days water in the last six weeks. He switched off the ZESA Last
week on 20th and On Sat to date Locked the transformer. He has moved 55
head of Cattle on to the farm. He Demands that we pump water for his Ha of Cabbages.

He has built a house and shed . A boom is being erected at the bottom of the road with a guard house.

We have not been given any papers to date !

He had 5 transformers put into his name without our permission. He agreed to put two back into our name at a meeting with Lands Committee Supt Meki Supt Chitondwe and T Nkatozo from Pannar were present. He renaged on this

I took a letter from Gollop & Blank to Marondera and Mr P.Mashingaidze signed receipt and agreed to reverse

Sun 30th he came & broke the locks on the main pumphouse & the Dam one and said we now have to request water from Him ! Police attended but wanted us to agree on sharing water only.

The farm has been fully productive at all times.


Things got worse & worse today.

A really horrid day here, as MEANIE [Herbert Shumbamhini ] broke the Pump house lock and took over our pump house !! and Dam one also !!
Brought 7 "helpers"

Police came after one & a Half hours and said we have to co -exist !! He said we now have to ask him for water after switching off the pivot !!!
Defies understanding!!.... What about the ZESA payment? they saw Meanie paid a $120 deposit on 2 July to get it into his name.

I said the Lawyer wrote a letter demanding the transformers be put back
in my Name They [zesa ] agreed.

He then agreed to pump water to the pivot again So it worked till power cut at 7pm

Will have a busy day tomorrow.

He has switched our Transformer off & Locked it on Sat Night, So, , , No Water or power at our house ! We are effectively Homeless, Staying at Hunters house.

Dennis Lapham



Attached are photos of my tobacco seedling beds which have been sprayed with a chemical which has killed aproximately 90% of my seedlings.Kutsaga said it was sprayed with a non-selective herbicide(Dr Susan Dimbi).

The week before - on the 20th August 2009, I had been taken to High Court with an Urgent application to evict me from my homestead and to stop all farming procedures. The magistrate dismissed this with costs.

Further and after the High Court application - these incidences have

24/08/09 RRB 0605919 "theft of sprinklers from tobacco seed bed site

25/08/09 RRB 0605925 " Mrs Pambukani physically assaulted my manager Mr Charles Bizabani - assault case

26/08/09 RRB 0605928 "Mrs Pambuakani removed sprinklers and proceeded to attack and damage tobacco seedlings at seed bed site and then stole said sprinklers.

29/08/09 RRB 0605938 "malicious damage to property - spraying seedlings with herbicide - worth approximately US$400 000.00

On a daily basis, myself and my workers and especially my manager, Mr Bizabani, are harassed and constantly being told to stop farming or work of any nature.

Kenneth Bartholomew

Wakefield Farm,


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

PROTEST the City of Harare’s misplaced priorities

Despite the outcry from Harare residence at the purchase of a USD 152,000 Mercedes Benz for Mayor Muchadeyi Masunda, the City of Harare has reportedly purchased two Prados. The combined cost for these vehicles could be as much as USD 190,000. This means that the City of Harare has spent over USD 340,000 on three luxury vehicles in the past month. According to CHRA, this would be enough money “to procure water treatment chemicals that can supply the entire city of Harare with clean water for almost half a year.”Harare residents are furious about this extravagance – especially in the face of failed service delivery with our water, sewage, rubbish and roads. Contact the City of Harare and lodge your complaint. Phone 04-753000 or 752979 or email

Appeal for Ben Freeth’s family

For years, Ben Freeth, his family, and farm workers, have been under pressure to leave Mt Carmel Farm in Chegutu. On Sunday 30 August, a bush fire was lit near the Freeth’s thatched home on the farm. There was a howling wind. In no time at all their farm house was on fire. They managed to get their passports and laptops out, one dog and her puppies. Their little Scottie and Jack Russell dogs died in the flames. The farm invaders who have beaten, tortured and harrassed the Freeths and Mike and Angela Campbell for years now just drove past on Ben's tractors pulling Ben's water bowsers. They even stole the laptops out of Ben's truck where he had left them amid the chaos. Ben and Laura and their three children (daughter aged 5, two sons 7 and 10), as well as three of their farmworker families have been left with nothing other than what they stood up in. Please open your hearts, and your cupboards, for these wonderful and brave families - clothes, blankets, eating and cooking utensils - absolutely anything would be so gratefully accepted. Contact: Mel George 011-405218 or David and Kerry Kay 302090 on 0912-434082, to arrange drop off.

The Freeth family home was burnt down

The Freeth family home was burnt down yesterday and they have lost everything. They have 3 children, girl aged 5 years and two boys, 7 years and 10 years. If you have anything that you could give to help them through this time (clothes etc) please may you drop off at number 91 West Road, Avondale.

This is a farming family who have been hassled a lot since they won their land case through the SADC tribunal. Their film, 'Mugabe and the White African' has been nominated for an Oscar.

Thank you

KARORI Farm Update

Brigadier Mujaji continues to defy the law. For the past three weeks we have been put under huge pressure by Mujaji and his soldiers. Mujaji has told me he will allow me to deliver my maize and tobacco provided I agree that the farm belongs to him. Plain extortion. The soldiers have shut the farm down for two weeks in August and then seized our tractors and irrigation equipment. We have been stopped from putting in a crop for this season and the soldiers have now taken all the keys to the farm.
The police still refuse to act despite all the court orders we have in our favour. The rule of law has totally collapsed and the national army are doing what they want. We still have 150 tons of tobacco and 400 tons of maize waiting to be delivered and this is all deteriorating. It is clear that Mujaji is using the army to steal what he can with the support of the government and police just because he has soldiers who take orders. Everyone in the area knows we were properly allocated the farm in accordance with the land programme and this is straight criminal theft and looting of the worst order. There are over six soldiers on the farm at any one time and all armed.

We have still maintained our presence on the farm and every day we try and grade our tobacco only to be stopped whenever the soldiers feel like stopping us. Last week they fired shots over the heads of the guards to remind them that they are armed and should be obeyed. The police still ignore our near daily reports to the station stating they have been informed not to act by their superiors. The country is desperate for food and production and this is carrying on unabated. There is a warrant for Mujaji's arrest issued by the high court but this is ignored. The unity Government should intervene if it is serious about attracting any sort of investment.

Something to think about

Attention Cathy Buckle,

Dear Kathy,

Recently arrived in Australia and an X tobacco farmer's wife I read a letter from you with the added letter from a child which is telling the whole story as I know it. I go a bit further and say we were known on the farm as the Mama and Baba. We did not suffer the trauma that a lot of farmers have done as we 'retired in time to avoid that.' Nevertheless we built up the infrastructure with our tobacco, wheat and maize that we grew. This was what we consider helped to build the country into a really rich and vibrant forerunner in Africa.

We look back and see ourselves finally behind a security fence, adams grenades surrounding us and having to carry firearms that we hated the thought of using. Working police reserve duties and running the farm while my husband was protecting other farms. All this time trying to have a life and supporting a huge labour force that we had for over the 36 years with children born on the farm, taught on the farm and working on the farm. These were the children that in l980 destroyed the school, the
beautiful oak desks that I had managed to buy from a school that
renovated. Not to mention the books which they tore and defecated on. My little Salvation Army teacher just ran away. Not happy thoughts of those days.

I really admire and pray for the people of Zimbabwe as do so many Zimbos who have left and moved away. I am really happy to move here now as I have my two children who left their country where the grew up in, went to school and played sport for. and proud to wear their county's Zimbabwe blazer.. We know we are all a special breed and most of the people who left have left a huge gap there and the country is the loser by far

I saw my husband die at the one hospital in Harare with staff that did everything they could for him, I know that they were really caring and I will be forever grateful for that. We have wonderful doctors still and I will never find the bond I had with mine in Zimbabwe, here.

Thank you for your letters, I actually do not normally receive them and would love to if you can and also anything from Jag that is available. I will remain a voice in the down under although you will have my email address and I ask for confidentiality.

Best wishes and God Bless.


Kay Mills

Kay Mills passed away on Saturday 29th August 2009. Wife of the late Pat Mills, Mother of John, Robert and Jill, Grandmother of of 6 and Great Grandmother of 3. Her funeral will be held at Nazareth House, Highlands on Friday 4th of September at 2:30pm. Contact Jill Fulton on 882194