Top stories for February 16- 20


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Moyo appoints new board for ZBC- Information Minister Jonathan Moyo has appointed a new board for the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation. It is chaired by Dennis Magaya. Other members are: Ndabezinhle Dlodlo, Phyllis Johnson, Gelfand Kausiyo, Donald Khumalo,Joyce Jenje-Makwenda, Charity Manyeruke, Rudo Mudavanhu, Father Gibson Munyoro, Cleopatra Matanhire-Mutisi and Blessing Rugara. The new board replaces that of Cuthbert Dube which was fired last year for failing to restructure the national broadcaster. The chief executive Happison Muchechetere was sent on leave after revelations that he was earning nearly US$40 000 a month including allowances. Moyo said: “Among other urgent tasks before it, the new ZBC board is expected, and indeed required, to restructure and turn around ZBC to ensure it has the right skills to make it commercially viable and technologically sound as a public broadcaster with a national mandate in light of the challenges of digital migration and the requirements of Zimbabwe’s new Constitution and informed by the outcome of the forensic and strategy audit of the ZBC that is about to be done by independent auditors under the auspices of the Comptroller and Auditor-General.”

Moyo fires new ZBC board chief
Information Minister Jonathan Moyo today withdrew the appointment of Dennis Magaya from the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation board , a day after the appointment, saying he had learnt that Magaya was involved in a salary scandal at Powertel one of the business units of the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority. Magaya had been appointed chairman of the new board. He was replaced by Catholic priest Father Gibson Munyoro. Moyo said the allegations against Magaya “are that he has been a recipient of inflated consultancy fees and that he has been an undeserving beneficiary of the corruption of tender procedures by the recently dissolved Powertel board. Powertel falls under the ministry of Energy and Power Development….In particular and of great concern to the ministry, it has since transpired that after designing a US$25 million new strategy for Powertel, the recently dissolved Powertel board proceeded to hire Dr Magaya to implement his own design despite the fact that the State Procurement Board had specifically disqualified his company from participating in the tender on grounds that he was conflicted as the designer of the strategy which was the subject of the tender.”

 

Mangoma formally reports assault to the police
The Movement for Democratic Change battle for leadership saga took another twist today when deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma formally filed an assault complaint with the police. Mangoma is reported to have been assaulted by MDC youths on Saturday after attending an executive meeting with district chairpersons. The 210 district chairpersons endorsed the leadership of party leader Morgan Tsvangirai. Youths who were outside the party headquarters at Harvest House are reported to have accosted Mangoma asking why he was challenging the party leader whose term ends in 2016. Mangoma claims he was assaulted while Tsvangirai watched. He claims Tsvangirai even shouted “catch”. Tsvangirai says he actually saved Mangoma from being assaulted. He says his driver and security staff drove Mangoma to his (Tsvangirai’s) house in Highlands. Mangoma and treasurer –general Roy Bennett have been calling on Tsvangirai to step down to save the party. They even offered him US$3 million to step down but Tsvangirai reportedly turned down offer. It is not clear who the financial heavyweights want to take over, but whispers say secretary-general Tendai Biti is the silent brains behind the whole saga.

 

Mugabe, wife and ZDI still under EU sanctions
President Robert Mugabe, his wife Grace, and the Zimbabwe Defence Industries are the only two people and one firm still under the European Union sanctions according to a statement issued by Catherine Ashton, the EU’s foreign affairs boss, today. The arms embargo also remains in force. Ashton said the EU will continue to watch governance and human rights in Zimbabwe until 1 November. She said the sanctions on Mugabe and the ZDI do not have any direct economic or social impact on the Zimbabwean people, and should not be blamed for the wider socio-economic challenges facing the country. An EU delegation that was in Zimbabwe disagreed saying that the sanctions were scaring away investors. It did not matter whether the sanctions were direct or indirect, at the end of the day they were damaging. Zimbabwe says the sanctions have cost the country US$42 billion.

 

Mugabe says Makoni is intelligent academically, but very foolish politically
President Robert Mugabe today said former Finance Minister Simba Makoni was intelligent academically but very foolish politically. In an interview marking his 90th birthday Mugabe said Makoni, who was once one of the front-runners to succeed Mugabe, was foolish and ill-advised to leave the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front in 2008 to contest for president. “Simba Makoni thought he was above everybody else and he did not need to have a party in order to win. Did the people admire him? He thought he could stand there and make the whole population of Zimbabwe as his party. They would vote for him to win then mushure imomo wozosarudza vanhu vaanoda vanenge vahwina kunemamwe maparty. That was his strategy. It doesn’t work here…. So they rejected him, Simba Makoni. After his rejection, ah, in this last election, well mid-way he tried to form his Mavambo and his friends deserted him. But to go to elections this time he thought he was too naked in 2008; he must dress up and then Mavambo, it’s not adequate dress. NaTsvangirai has problems nanaBiti uko. If l go to Tsvangirai and say let’s go together, Tsvangirai will agree in the hope that should he win there he could then, in due course, take over from Tsvangirai. Kuhwandira munhu uku aneparty yake zvake. That did not work too; poor Makoni. Intelligent academically, but very foolish politically.”

(19 VIEWS)

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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