UNICEF supported schooling facilities in Mat North (Pic. UN)

BULAWAYO – Heads of FOUR agencies of the UN have this week descended on the North-western ZIMBABWE province of MATABELELAND NORTH to take stock of development work progress.

They are UNICEF Representative MOHAMED AG AYOYA, IOM Chief of Mission LILY SANYA, WFP Country Director EDDIE ROWE, and UNDP Country Director GEORGES VAN MONTFORT, led by UN Resident Representative BISHOW PARAJULI.

UN Communications Specialist SIRAK GEBREHIWOT has issued a statement saying the group has been in the region for THREE days, from NINE to 11 JULY.

He says the team visited UNITED BULAWAYO Hospital in the commercial capital, where UNDP has supported major health schemes through the Global Fund.

The projects include building and fitting pharmacy cold chain facilities at TSHABALALA Clinic, an incinerator at the NATPHARM Warehouse, and 11 solar installations at clinics in BULAWAYO City under the solar for health initiative.

UNITED BULAWAYO Hospital is a high-volume anti-retroviral site, with about FIVE-THOUSAND patients on treatment getting support through the Global Fund and other donors.

Mat North benefits from UNDP sponsored health delivery scheme (Pic. UN)

UNDP Country Director VAN MONTFORT has expressed satisfaction with the pharmacy warehouse, saying the work helps improve health services at the referral hospital, including intensifying the ongoing efforts of combating HIV and AIDS.

The world body says HIV prevalence has decreased by 24 percent over the last decade in ZIMBABWE, which is on course to achieve the global 90:90:90 targets by 2020.

It says currently, 74 percent of people living with HIV know their status, 87 percent of those who know their status receive treatment and 87 percent of those on treatment have their viral load suppressed: which is 74:87:87.

Mr GEBREHIWOT says the UN team has visited NTABAZINDUNA to inspect a human rights outreach clinic organized to provide information, counselling, and legal aid.

He says the Embassy of SWEDEN and the EUROPEAN UNION are supporting the scheme, which also provides protection services to the vulnerable and people at risk in ZIMBABWE.

IOM Chief of Mission LILY SANYA says the project brings together 10 civil society groups, their network of partners and local authorities to help improve dialogue and access to information on human rights and services to rural communities in remote areas.

In Ward 20 of LUBIMBI area in BINGA District, the WFP and its partners have supported the local community to construct the KAMOMBO Dip Tank; rescuing the community from walking 15 kilometres to the nearest facility like they used to do.

The construction of the dip tank has further ensured regular dipping, thus enhancing the quality of cattle that will fetch better prices on the market.

WFP Representative and Country Director EDDIE ROWE says the agency has a multi-year strategic framework that has helped improve disaster risk reduction in all its dimensions of exposure, vulnerability and hazard characteristics.

It has further supported communities in building back better in a sustainable manner to achieve ZERO hunger.

Meanwhile, UNICEF has worked with the community and government department to build classroom blocks and toilets, sink a borehole, and provide textbooks, benches, and ECD materials at DONGA Primary School.

The UN says DONGA Primary School, ONE of the satellite schools in the region getting help from the UK DFID, GERMANY, and the Global Partnership for education, has an enrolment of more than 200 students.

UNICEF Representative MOHAMED AG AYOYA says he is impressed by the energy and dedication of the teachers and parents.

However, the UN official says while there has been progress, a lot still to be done to ensure schools get proper facilities; and children have appropriate environment to learn qualitatively.

The THREE-day-long UN field visit to the north-western region follows a 28 JUNE high-level review of the 2016 to 2020 ZIMBABWE UN Development Assistance Framework, or ZUNDAF, at mid-point./Sabanews/cam



Mauritius, fastest growing African wealth market (Pic. Agencies)

PORT LOUIS – A renowned intelligence company says the number of millionaires on the offshore island of MAURITIUS has grown by 20 percent in the last year, making it the fastest growing wealth market in AFRICA.

The NEW WORLD WEALTH has published a study detailing the performance of high-net-worth-individuals in selected AFRICAN countries between 2006 and 2016.

The INTERNATIONAL INVESTMENT online magazine says the report places MAURITIUS at the top in the continent, with a growth of 230 percent.

It says the high-net-worth-individuals, or HNWIs, refer to persons with wealth of ONE-MILLION US dollars or more.

The study also says the strong growth in millionaires in MAURITIUS has been driven by the relocation of large number of wealthy individuals over the past decade, especially from FRANCE and Southern AFRICA.

It says ownership rights are strong in MAURITIUS, which encourages locals and foreigners to invest in property and businesses in the INDIAN Ocean country of ONE-MILLION-268-THOUSAND-315 people.

Le Caudan Waterfront, a commercial development in Port Louis (Pic. Agencies)

About 280 millionaires have moved there from SOUTH AFRICA alone since 2006, since individuals living in MAURITIUS are free to invest overseas with no exchange controls; which encourages wealthy people to use the country as a business and investment hub.

AFRASIA, the MAURITIUS based bank that ordered the study, says the situation has created a growing financial services sector, particularly in offshore banking, fund management, and private banking.

The offshore tax jurisdiction also offers automatic permanent residency to individuals who buy a 500-THOUSAND US-dollar home in the country and low taxes that appeal to wealthy individuals and retired persons.

The intelligence company says the trend is likely to continue over the next decade, with analysts expecting to see an increase of millionaires by 130 percent in MAURITIUS, followed by ETHIOPIA and RWANDA at 100 percent./Sabanews/cam



UN Resident Representative Bishow Parajuli with some of the beneficiaries of the Leaving No-one Behind campaign (Pic. UN)

BINGA – The UNITED NATIONS Mission in ZIMBABWE has this week inspected a number of projects it is sponsoring in the north-western region of MATABELELAND NORTH.

The schemes, running under the global Sustainable Development Goals, with the theme – Leave No-one Behind, are in line with the UN Agenda 2030 and its 17 set goals.

A statement, issued by UN Communications Specialist SIRAK GEBREHIWOT, in the capital, HARARE, says UN Resident Coordinator BISHOW PARAJULI has led a high-powered delegation to the impoverished region.

His team comprises UNICEF Representative MOHAMED AG AYOYA, IOM Chief of Mission LILY SANYA, WFP Country Director EDDIE ROWE, and UNDP Country Director GEORGES VAN MONTFORT.

They have spent some THREE days in MATABELELAND NORTH Province, visiting schemes supporting health, nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene, and education.

The statement says the other schemes sustain human rights, community asset creation, as well as resilience building for food and nutrition security in BULAWAYO, LUPANE and BINGA districts.

Mr GEBREHIWOT says BINGA District Nutritionist VANNESA NKOMO has addressed the UN team during the field visit.

She has summed up the UN-sponsored rural development programs in MATABELELAND NORTH that are addressing Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs.

They relate to ending poverty (SDG-ONE), ending hunger (SDG-TWO), achieving universal and quality health (SDG-THREE), quality education (SDG-FOUR), improving access to water and sanitation (SDG-SIX), and promoting peace, justice and strong institutions (SDG-16).

UN Resident Representative Bishow Parajuli chats with pupils in Matabeleland North (Pic. UN)

Mr GEBREHIWOT says during the THREE-day-long trip, the UN Team has met and interacted with Provincial Administrators, District Administrators, and representatives of Government Ministries.

They have also discussed with health and social workers, school principals, teachers, students, farmers, and families benefiting from the harmonised social cash transfers.

UN Resident Coordinator BISHOW PARAJULI has in turn told BINGA District officials his office is happy with its contributions and the cooperation with the local administration as well as government ministries.

He says the UN Mission also cherishes its alliance with non-governmental groups and communities, mainly in integrating the SDGs into local development projects, including health, education, social protection, human rights.

The other schemes covered are community asset creation and resilience building to enable vulnerable communities not only to achieve their right to development, but also to adapt to effects of climate change.

Mr PARAJULI says they have equally learned of the need to intensify joint efforts including engagement of private sector to address remaining challenges of providing pupils with adequate school facilities.

The Head of the UN Mission in ZIMBABWE says such efforts should also help scale-up ongoing development programs to support the rural communities achieve their local development plans in the shortest time possible./Sabanews/cam



Lesotho Times Editor Lloyd Mutungamiri (Pic. Lesotho Times)

MASERU – AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL has called on authorities in LESOTHO to prove their commitment to press freedom by resolving the case of a prominent journalist, LLOYD MUTUNGAMIRI.

NEWS 24 says the ZIMBABWEAN born Editor of the LESOTHO TIMES newspaper is still awaiting justice TWO years after a shooting incident that nearly killed him.

The online publication says Mr MUTUNGAMIRI remained fighting for his life after a failed assassination attempt by suspected members of the military in 2016 at his house in the capital, MASERU.

It also quotes the AFRICAN INDEPENDENT as saying the journalist was shot on the drive way of his home as he was about to drive to work.

AMNESTY says he suffered the near-fatal gunshot wounds after his publication of an article alleging outgoing Defence Force Lieutenant General TLALI KAMOLI was to get an exit package of about THREE-MILLION-500-THOUSAND US dollars.

It says FIVE members of the military arrested and charged with attempted murder on 29 NOVEMBER 2017 appeared in court for the FIRST hearing on 13 DECEMBER, but the trial has never taken place again.

The rights group says Mr MUTUNGAMIRI has never recovered fully after the shooting and he needs medication, which has left him with excessive hospital bills; especially now when he is not able to return to work.

Members of Lesotho Armed Forces (Pic. AfricaNews)

AMNESTY Southern AFRICA Regional Director MULEYA MWANANYANDA says the fact that the case is still open, with no clear dates set to resolve it in court, means he is denied the chance for closure.

He says after TWO long years, the journalist and his family deserve justice now, because the delay by the LESOTHO Government to bring Mr MUTUNGAMIRI’s attackers to justice, through a fair, independent, and impartial trial, is an insult to press freedom.

The rights campaigner says the trial of the soldiers suspected of trying to do the killing should send a clear message that targeting journalists is not tolerated in LESOTHO, but the current state of affairs shows a culture of impunity prevails./Sabanews/cam



Fatima Kalima, co-founder of the Forum for the Development of Youths with Disabilities (Pic. The Nation)

KUALAR LUMPUR – MALAWI has taken part in the SECOND Global Meeting of the GIRLS NOT BRIDES Campaign held in JUNE this year in KUALAR LUMPUR, MALAYSIA.

MBC News says countries represented at the gathering have agreed to focus on involving the youth in the drive to help end child marriages, including marriage of kids with disabilities.

It says Coordinator of the FORUM FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF YOUTH WITH DISABILITIES has attended the conference with support from GIRLS NOT BRIDES – UNITED KINGDOM.

Delegates to the Malaysia Conference on child marriages (Pic. MBC)

The national broadcaster says FATIMA KALIMA has commended the meeting, describing the event as an eye-opener.

She says it gave them a chance to share ideas on how countries can ably end child marriages and empower children who have come out of such premature unions.

Ms KALIMA says the gathering has also revealed the youth need to be actively involved in the issues of ending child marriages, as they are the victims.

GIRLS NOT BRIDES MALAWI Chapter with some organisations in MALAWI including the Forum has been fighting hard to end child marriages in the SADC country.

Ms KALIMA says there is need for all stakeholders, like the State, traditional leaders, and churches, to lead in the involvement of young people, including the disabled, in the fight against child marriages.

She says most of the times decision makers have been doing things without involving the victims, but her group now wants children – who are the most affected – to voice out their concerns and propose solutions.

MBC News says conference delegates were from MOZAMBIQUE, TANZANIA, MALAWI, MOROCCO, ZIMBABWE, some states in West AFRICA, ASIA and the UNITED KINGDOM.

Meanwhile, as the lobby to protect disabled children continues, Police in the SOUTHERN REGION district of PHALOMBE have arrested FIVE suspects in connection with the missing of a 12-year-old albino boy.

MBC News says the accused include the mother of the boy, who went missing on SIX JULY, with the National Police Spokesperson saying they have charged the suspects with conspiracy to commit murder.

However, Officer JAMES KADADZERA has dismissed earlier reports about the body of the missing boy having been found, saying the Police are still searching for the child.

He says their investigations took them from the home of the boy to the place where SIX JULY celebrations were taking place, leading to the arrest of the FIVE – who are all related to the missing boy.

The MALAWI Police Spokesperson says he hopes their interrogations will yield good results, which will enable them to take the suspects to Court./Sabanews/cam



Some of the beneficiaries of FEDOMA schemes (Pic. Malawi 24)

LILONGWE – MALAWI has launched the National Disability Mainstreaming Strategy and Implementation Plan aimed to increase the contribution of persons with disabilities to development activities.

The government says the move comes after years of advocacy from a variety of groups under the banner of the FEDERATION OF DISABILITY ORGANIZATIONS IN MALAWI, FEDOMA, complaining about marginalisation.

Gender, Children, Disability, and Welfare Minister JEAN KALILANI has revealed the information at the launch of the strategy this week in the capital, LILONGWE.

She says the policy will remove and avoid the inequalities between persons with disabilities and the able-bodied persons.

Minister KALILANI says people with disabilities have many obstacles in accessing education, health and other services, all of which the strategy is going to eliminate.

MBC News quotes the Cabinet member as saying affected citizens will now be able to enter any house they want and have access to other services at any time just like anybody else.

She says the government aims at empower persons with disabilities economically, set up a disability fund and make sure they have presentation in the National Assembly.

FEDOMA Chairperson NITTAH HANJAHANJA has commended the State for listening to their calls, saying her group will reach out to affected people starting from primary schools.

They feel the strategy should be implemented like never done before, given the number of stakeholders like ministries and other departments that have been part of the process.

Diplomatic missions have also applauded the planned MALAWI disability intervention scheme, with AMERICAN Ambassador VIRGINIA PALMER describing it as a milestone in efforts to build a prosperous nation./Sabanews/cam



BLF deputy president Zanele Lwane (Pic. SABC)

RANDBURG – The BLACK FIRST LAND FIRST, BLF Party in SOUTH AFRICA is at loggerheads with a powerful AFRIKANER minority group in the country, AFRI-FORUM.

The BLF is described as a Pan-AFRICANIST and revolutionary socialist political party founded in 2015 by ANDILE MNGXITAMA after his expulsion from the ECONOMIC FREEDOM FIGHTERS, also a breakaway from the ruling ANC.

On the other hand, AFRI-FORUM is a group linked to the SOLIDARITY trade union and set up in 2006 to encourage engagement of AFRIKANERS as well as other minorities with the rest of the public.

Available information says SOLIDARITY is a trade union within the CHRISTIAN tradition of unionism, unlike the majority of other SOUTH AFRICAN trade unions with socialist ideologies.

The group, set up in 1902, has reportedly union positioned itself as a vehicle for minorities in the country to have their voices heard, with its membership being mainly, but not exclusively, AFRIKANERS.

SABC says the BLACK FIRST LAND FIRST has launched a fierce attack on AFRIFORUM for reviving a culpable homicide case against son of former President JACOB ZUMA, DUDUZANE.

The broadcaster says Mr ZUMA has made a brief appearance this week at the RANDBURG Magistrate’s Court on the case linked to a collision between his luxury vehicle and a minibus taxi in 2014.

It says the National Prosecuting Authority in 2015 decided not to prosecute the young ZUMA, but AFRI-FORUM and Former Prosecutor GERRIE NEL had other thoughts.

SABC News says he announced his group intended to pursue a private prosecution against DUDUZANE ZUMA, and the Prosecuting Authority reversed that decision.

It quotes BLF Party Deputy President ZANELE LWANE as alleging a group of extremists, which he says should be banned in the democratic SOUTH AFRICA, has revived the case.

She also accuses AFRI-FORUM of fighting to see black people fighting, saying they have never seen a single case where AFRI-FORUM holds other white people who kill blacks day and night to account.

Mr LWANE says just because DUDUZANE ZUMA happens to be the son of a former black president, then he should be demonized, and his dignity should be stripped off.

The SOUTH AFRICAN politician says such view is really unfair and they are demonstrating in solidarity because when AFRI-FORUM are done with Mr ZUMA, the rest of them are next./Sabanews/cam



Game rangers and vets remove a wire snare from a rhino in the Mosia-Tunya National Park near Livingstone Town (Pic. Oscar Nkala)

LUSAKA – Tourism and Arts Permanent Secretary HOWARD SIKWELA of ZAMBIA says he is concerned about the high numbers of women being used as agents in illegal wildlife trade.

The LUSAKA TIMES says he has made the comments when Wildlife Crime Prevention Awareness Manager LUWI NGULIKA paid a courtesy call on him at his office.

It says Mr SIKWELA has called on the Wildlife Crime Prevention Awareness organization to carry out more sensitization, especially for women who end up suffering when arrested.

He says just like in drug trafficking, women fall victim as they are being used in the marketing and selling of contrabands like illegal game meat.

Mr SIKWELA has also asked the Awareness Manager to go flat out and tell women about the dangers that come with such risky business engagements.

He says the government cannot manage to go it alone in bringing down wildlife crime, hence the need to engage with other stakeholders like the Wildlife Crime Prevention Awareness.

Manager NGULIKA says her organization cherishes the support from the Tourism and Arts Ministry and wishes for continued partnership for posterity.

She says there is need to change the manner in the way people look at conservation efforts of all parties involved for the benefit of all ZAMBIANS.

Ms NGULIKA says ZAMBIANS need to know the value of wildlife, and there is need to leave a legacy of conservation efforts.

The TIMES says the information is in a statement from Tourism and Arts Ministry Public Relations Officer SAKABILO KALEMBWE earlier this week in the capital, LUSAKA.

A 2016 report says the elephant population in ZAMBIA has declined by about 90 percent due to poaching, while the number of black rhinos of about 13-THOUSAND in 1981 is now extinct./Sabanews/cam



Typical Swazi hut (Pic. Times of Swaziland)

NSANGWINI – A 78-year-old granny and her four-year-old grandchild have been killed after the thatched hut they were sleeping in caught fire in Centre-western SWAZILAND.

The TIMES OF SWAZILAND says the TWO were burnt beyond recognition during the fatal incident at NSANGWINI, a remote area near the MAHLANGATJA Inkhundla of MANZINI District.

It quotes 57-year-old MFUNWA NHLABATSI as saying his mother, Gogo LOMBALISO MASEKO, was sickly and mentally unstable due to old age, and always slept with the lamp on.

He says the late old woman would sometimes crawl to the door and leave the hut, which forced the family to switch off the lamp and lock the door; but this time they left it burning.

Mr NHLABATSI says they had stopped using candles because they feared a similar incident would occur, not knowing the lamp they later bought would in fact lead to her death.

The family suspects the late granny had tried to crawl and knocked off the lamp, which fell onto the blankets and eventually set the whole hut ablaze.

Mr NHLABATSI says before he discovered the hut had caught fire, he heard a sound and suspected it was lightning – as the weather had changed during the night.

He says he saw a huge flame coming from the hut when he peeped through the window, and he immediately went out and raised the alarm for other residents to help put out the fire.

However, despite the help from neighbours, Mr NHLABATSI says they failed to rescue his late mother and the little boy, BANELE PURENA MDLULI because the roof had already collapsed.

Police from the MAHLANGATJA Post, led by Inspector MUZI PHUNGWAYO, arrived at the scene and found the TWO bodies already burnt beyond recognition, and they took away the remains.

The TIMES says the Fire and Emergency Services personnel also arrived at the scene, but the residents had already managed to put out the burning.

It quotes Mr NHLABATSI as saying on the night of the incident, his mother literally refused to let him put out the lamp saying she feared getting attacked by strange dreams.

He says the family is still traumatised by the fatal event because although their mother was old and sickly, she did not deserve to die the way she did; and considering that the fire also claimed the life of an innocent child.

ONE neighbour only identified as BABE MKHWANAZI says the incident is the most painful encounter he has ever come across in his life.

He says he heard the screams and immediately heard the shouting for help; but they failed to assist because as they came running with containers of water, the whole hut collapsed and buried the TWO.

SWAZILAND Police Chief Information and Communications Officer Superintendent KHULANI MAMBA has confirmed the fire incident, saying they are conducting further investigations./Sabanews/cam



Justice Priscilla Chigumba (Pic. The Herald)

HARARE – The ZIMBABWE Electoral Commission says it has completed printing presidential ballot papers for general elections scheduled for the 30TH of this month.

THE HERALD quotes Commissioner QHUBANI MOYO as saying they will publish the number of ballot papers printed as soon as required by the Electoral Act.

He says the voting papers were printed at the FIDELITY PRINTERS and political parties have visited the firm to see the printing process.

Mr MOYO says the Commission will soon publish the number of the ballot papers as well as the name of the printing company because the Electoral Law demands people should have that information.

The announcement amid a massive demonstration by the main opposition MDC Alliance that groups SEVEN political parties, most of them splinters from the original MOVEMENT FOR DEMOCRATIC CHANGE.

Alliance Leader NELSON CHAMISA, who replaced the late MORGAN TSVANGIRAI as the President of MDC-T, has addressed his supporters in the capital, HARARE.

Other media reports say he has threatened to pre-empt what he calls the ZIMBABWE Electoral Commission vote-rigging antics by prematurely announcing results for the elections.

MDC Alliance Presidential Candidate Nelson Chamisa (Pic. The Herald)

Mr CHAMISA says his planned action aims to enable the electorate to compare the figures, although the national Constitution has placed that function on the Commission.

According to the supreme law of the land, the ZIMBABWE Electoral Commission has the sole mandated to administer all electoral processes in the country, including the printing of ballot papers.

Commission Chairperson Justice PRISCILLA CHIGUMBA says the electoral body went beyond its legal duty TWO weeks ago when invited all political parties to observe the printing of the ballot papers.

She says the Commission is supposed to procure ballot paper, design it, print it, and distribute it, without involving anyone else.

Justice CHIGUMBA has questioned if registered voters would really like their pictures and fingerprints, names and identification card numbers, telephones, and home addresses displayed in public as demanded by the MDC Alliance.

She says her organisation actually has a duty to protect the registered voters from identity thefts and all sorts of things, and it balances conflicting interests.

The final ballot register has a total of FIVE-MILLION-695-THOUSAND-706 registered voters, while the Commission has set up 10-THOUSAND-985 polling stations nationwide.

A total of 23 people have registered to compete in the 2018 ZIMBABWE Presidential race, which comes for the FIRST time without former dictator ROBERT MUGABE since independence in 1980./Sabanews/cam