PRESIDENTIAL RALLY FOR THE UK
You are all invited to attend an MDC Rally to be held in Luton on Saturday 23rd June 2007. The President of the Movement for Democratic Change Mr Morgan Tsvangirai will be addressing this meeting at 1300hrs-1600hrs. The venue details are LEWSEY COMMUNITY CENTRE, LANDACE RD, LUTON LU40 SW.
The Movement for Democratic Change heads the largest and most consistent onslaught on the Robert Mugabe oppression in Zimbabwe since independence. Its leader Mr Morgan Richard Tsvangirai has been the ZANU PF Regimes number one enemy. As a result he has had an election stolen from him in 2002. He has suffered a lot at the hands of Robert Mugabe including trumped up charges that ended in his unlawful imprisonment and the recent blatant and daylight attempt on his life in March 2007.
May all of us please turn up in support of our struggle. There shall be a Fundraising Do at the end of the Rally at the same venue.
Julius Sai Mutyambizi-Dewa
MDC UK & Ireland
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Thursday, June 07, 2007
This is a thorny issue that keeps propping up everywhere even when serious discourse is required for example now in the climate of heightened repression from the dictatorial regime led by Robert Mugabe. The images of battered opposition figures graced the televisions worldwide, everyone was in unison in condemning the illegal government Robert Mugabe's barbaric reaction to a prayer meeting. News of the death of Gift Tandare murdered by the Zimbabwean police on March 11 2007 was shocking, the assault of MDC lawmaker and Secretary for Information & Publicity enroute to Europe on parliament business was enough evidence for anyone that doubted the brutality of this dictatorship. But yet Zimbabweans across the world are criminalised, dehumanised made to beg and grovel just to be given recognition that everybody knows they deserve that they are genuine refugees fleeing political persecution from Zimbabwe. The defination of a refugee is a person owing to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country; or who, not having a nationality and being outside the country of his former habitual residence as a result of such events,is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to return to it. Many Zimbabweans who find themselves now outside Zimbabwe fall in this category, they have well founded fear of being tortured, or even getting killed by the murderous regime of Robert Mugabe.
In Africa its excusable or is it? The dilemma facing the countries that surround Zimbabwe is political rather than logistical. If they grant the millions of Zimbabweans fleeing the political repression, refugee they will have openly acknowledged that there is a political problem in Zimbabwe. That was the issue that faced Home Affairs of South Africa in deciding Roy Bennet's application for asylum in South Africa. South Africa all along has been saying that there is nothing wrong in Zimbabwe so for them to turn around and grant Roy the refugee status given his profile within the MDC, he is the current Treasurer General and a former MP, is bold it should be encouraging for thousands of comrades in South Africa whose cases are in limbo. As expected they granted Roy, it would have been difficult to refuse given how high profile his case was or his persecution at the hands of the dictatorship which received wide media coverage. What about other activists whose profile is not so evident who at the time of fleeing Zimbabwe failed even to collect their party cards which is evident enough where the impetus lies on the asylum seeker to prove that they have genuine fear of persecution. How do you prepare your flight for in an ideal world an ideal refugee will apply for a passport from the same authorities that are looking for you, he will carry his party card and paraphernalia, and all evidence needed to convince the authorities that he is a genuine refugee. In real life when Mugabe's goons come looking for you and you escape their attention once its a reprieve but also a sign on the wall that fate saved you, you might not be luck second time around so why not go now. Thousands are without passports they will have to use other means to get to their destinations, you cannot obviously apply for passport when they are looking for you its like handing yourself to the same people you are running from. What the governments of South Africa, Botswana and other countries surrounding Zimbabwe where the majority of those seeking refugee from political repression turn to have done is to brand all Zimbabweans border jumbers and therefore liable for prosecution under the subjective governments immigration laws, in that way they moral absolve themselves from helping Zimbabweans running away from Mugabe.
Despite all the reports in the newspapers even the events of March 11 which is a microscopic look of how opposition members fare at the hands of the brutal police everyday in some unreported therefore undocumented cases. Even as we speak demonstrators belonging to WOZA (Women of Zimbabwe Arise) were arrested in Bulawayo two days ago, 21 key members of MDC have been abducted from their homes and work places and are being held without charge at various police stations in Harare, even those fleeing the regime are not safe as 2000 people were arrested at Zimbabwean border towns over the weekend. How many Gift Tandares does the world need before they give Zimbabweans the refugee status they so deserve. Or is it a daily repetition of Zimbabwe's "3\11" that should wake various governments across the world who in their slumber who on one hand publicly acknowledge that there is political persecution in Zimbabwe while on the other hand their governments refuse to recognise Zimbabweans as genuine refugees fleeing the aforesaid political persecution.
Monday, June 04, 2007
Still recuperating from the brutal assault at the hands of murderous Zimbabwean police Grace Kwinjeh, MDC's Deputy Secretary For International Relations relived the events of Zimbabwe's "3/11". As a special guest to MDC UK & Ireland Women's Assembly Fundraising Gala held Saturday 2nd Of June 2007 in Bedford she reduced a room full of female delegates to tears with her story at the hands of brutal state agents and the army. I was privileged to cover the event as a member of MDC UK & Ireland Transport & Logistics Committee.
It was a tear inducing moment when Grace Kwinjeh walked in accompanied by female colleagues. After being introduced by Ephraim Tapa the MDC UK & Ireland Chairperson, she said "We went through unspeakable torture" as she re-told the story of the events that led brutal repression and the arrest of more than 60 opposition activists at the hands of the Zimbabwean police and army. She recounted how they were arrested with Lovemore Madhuku and Sekai Holland on their way to the aborted prayer meeting. How they were assaulted by CIO operatives before being separated from the whole group to various police stations in Harare. She also recounted how she was assaulted by the army at Braeside Police Station, it was at Braeside Police Station where her ear was almost severed from the brutal beating. The plan was to kill the opposition figures no doubt, the separation from the group, the denial of medical and legal representation. After MDC lawyers had managed to get a court order thats when they were allowed medical attention, it was deemed that herself Grace Kwinjeh together with Mai Sekai Holland a 60 year old grandmother who was suffering from various bone fractures as a result of the beating and The MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai who head injuries should be sent to hospital. They were taken to Baines Avenues Clinic in Harare and were being treated under arrest guarded by two soldiers with a combat machine gun in a civilian hospital. "Each time that night when we heard the sound of boots returning, our bowels loosened,” said Grace Kwinjeh of the ordeal she and Sekai Holland, 64, underwent.
Grace Kwinjeh's narrative of the events that day were not only brought tears to the women that attended but also uplifted everyone that was present. Peep some of the pictures from the event: