Here we go again – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary

Mnangagwa has made clear that Zimbabwe will have its own currency again by the end of the year. Economist and former senior MDC MP Eddie Cross says it will be the strongest currency in the region. The Vigil respectfully disagrees.

We bottom wipers in Britain are not economists but have watched the Zimbabwe economy slide from bad to worse over the last 20 years or so, with astronomic inflation destroying their hopes for the future and reducing their families to poverty. Inflation is now tipped to reach 280% by the year’s end.

To us the cause of Zimbabwe’s problems seems to be rampant corruption and government ineptitude and, for all the talk, we have seen no serious effort to deal with this. How many known corrupt Zanu PF bigwigs are in jail? None.

Tendai Biti’s criticism of hitherto calm Finance Minister Ncube, made on the sidelines of a book launch in London last week, has provoked the minister into an hysterical response. This will only increase skepticism about the success of his handling of the economy.

The diaspora has no faith in a Zanu PF government and, if the new currency is introduced, we fully expect it to devalue rapidly, leading to yet another chase for the US dollar which has proved such an easy route to wealth for Zanu PF crooks in the past.

The truth is that Zanu PF never changes. It always reverts to dodgy practices that have kept it in power for going on 40 years – violence and corruption. It has become well-skilled in both, with tacit international support. So why should they change a winning formula?

Other points

  • Zanu PF has certainly been a money spinner for Grace Mugabe. Mnangagwa says that she has been shown in a land audit to own 16 farms, in flagrant violation of government policy of one farm per person. Zanu PF also seems to have paid off for MP Justice Mayor Wadyajena who has just paid a quarter of a million dollars for a Lamborghini. And at an auction this week Zanu PF oil tycoon Kuda Tagwirei paid 250,000 RTGS dollars for a trademark scarf worn by the President. Only a few months ago a similar scarf fetched only a fraction of this sum.
  • Action for Southern Africa, the successor to the Anti-Apartheid Movement, plans to launch a Youth Activist Network (YAN) next year. It has asked for our help and writes: we’re currently surveying young people about what they think should be included in the design of the YAN, how it should operate and issues it should prioritise etc. We wondered if you’d be able to share the survey with young people within your network so that we have as many voices from Zimbabwe or who are friends of Zimbabwe as possible involved in the design stage. The survey and a full explanation of the YAN is here:
  • Thanks to those who came early to help set up the front table today and put up the banners: Shylette Chipangura, Josephine Jombe, Jonathan Kariwo, Rosemary Maponga, Lucia Mudzimu, Esther Munyira, Mary Muteyerwa, Sindile Ncube, Hazvinei Saili, Bigboy Sibanda, Ephraim Tapa, Mary Taruvinga and Bridget Zhakata. Thanks to Rosemary, Josephine and Shylette for looking after the front table, to Hazvinei, Bigboy, Lucia and Nyarai for handing out flyers, to Mary for drumming and to Tatenda Mandiki, Esther, Jonathan and Lucia for photos. Thanks also to the group (Hellena Gusinyu, Mary Ndoro, Rosemary Maponga, Mary Taruvinga and Rosemary Rubatika) from the women’s wing of the MDC UK who brought flowers to lay at the Embassy door to commemorate the recent death of Tsvangirai’s daughter Vimbai.
  • For latest Vigil pictures check: Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.

FOR THE RECORD: 29 signed the register.


  • ROHR Reading branch outreach and general meeting. Saturday 22nd June. Community outreach from 11.30 am – 1.30 pm. Venue: Broad Street, Reading. Awareness campaign on deteriorating human rights in Zimbabwe. General meeting from 2 – 5 pm: Venue: The RISC 35-39 London Street, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4PS. Contact: Nicodimus 07877386792, Josephine 07455166668, Shylette 07828929806, Josh 07877246251.
  • ROHR fundraising dinner. Saturday 29th June from 6 pm till late. Venue: Zazas, 108 Whitechapel Road, London E1 1JE. Contact: Esther Munyira 07492058109, Fungisai Mupandira 07468504393, Sipho Ndlovu 07400566013, Patricia Masamba 07708116625, Simbarashe Jingo 07787870888, Pamela Chirimuta 07762737339, Sikhumbuzule Sibanda 07912210225, and Farai Muroiwa 07365431776.
  • ROHR general members’ meeting. Saturday 6th July from 11.30 am. Venue: Royal Festival Hall, South Bank Centre, Belvedere Road SE1 8XX. Contact: Ephraim Tapa 07940793090, Patricia Masamba 07708116625.
  • ROHR sponsored walk. Saturday 27th July. Contact: Esther Munyira 07492058109, Sipho Ndlovu 07400566013, Patricia Masamba and Farai Muroiwa 07365431776. More information as plans progress.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil. All proceeds go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe’s work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
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