Zimbabwe

Mugabe defiant over new law

2010-04-18 23:36

Special Report

Grace Mugabe set to take key Zanu-PF position
Grace Mugabe set to take key Zanu-PF position

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's wife, Grace, has reportedly accepted a nomination for the position of secretary of Zanu-PF's Women's League, marking her first move into frontline politics.

Harare - President Robert Mugabe pledged on Sunday to move ahead with plans to hand over 51% control of businesses to blacks under a controversial programme.

During ceremonies on Sunday marking the 30th anniversary of independence from colonial rule, Mugabe said the proposed business take-overs are a concrete example of policies followed over the last three decades that enable locals to own the nation's resources.

The so-called indigenisation and empowerment act was passed in 2008, when parliament was still dominated by Mugabe's lawmakers. The law came into force on March 1 and all businesses were given until April 15 to hand in proposals as to how they would hand over 51% of their company to blacks. This included foreign and white-owned businesses.

The party of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, the former opposition leader who was also present at the ceremonies on Sunday, has opposed the programme and said on Wednesday the law had been shelved to avoid deterring much-needed foreign investment in the ailing economy.

Tsvangirai's MDC on Wednesday said a meeting of the coalition cabinet chaired by Mugabe suspended the act, which defined "indigenous" Zimbabweans as those who suffered under colonial-era racial discrimination and their children born after independence in 1980, effectively excluding the nation's 20 000 whites.

'Sovereign right'

Saviour Kasukwere, a minister from Mugabe's party in charge of empowerment policy, countered this and said on Wednesday the law will go ahead, but it had only been delayed for more discussions.

The new so-called indigenisation law "recognises our sovereign right of ownership", Mugabe told crowds at the 50-seat Chinese-built sports stadium in Harare.

Mugabe said the nation, governed by a year-long coalition between his Zanu-PF party and Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change, faced continuing criticism from what he called "unrepentant and incorrigible racist forces".

He said the coalition was proceeding with national reconstruction despite outside opposition from Western countries.

Seizures of white-owned farms and "now the indigenisation programme serve as concrete and living examples of empowerment ... designed chiefly to redress the historic imbalances in ownership of the economy", Mugabe said.

Polarisation and hostilities

Mugabe did not elaborate on any fresh deadlines under the law on Sunday.

Coalition leaders watched military displays at the stadium which was reopened this month after being shut down for three years for structural repairs by Chinese engineers. Crowds cheered and whistled for Tsvangirai when Mugabe formally welcomed him to the celebrations.

Mugabe, 86, acknowledged a need for national healing on Sunday "following a period of polarisation and hostilities between our people".

Years of political violence, much of it blamed on Mugabe militants and state agents, and economic turmoil came with the often violent seizures of white-owned farms that Mugabe ordered in 2000, disrupting the agriculture-based economy in the former regional breadbasket and leading to acute food shortages and world record inflation.

Human rights groups say at least 600 people, mostly Tsvangirai supporters, died in the past decade and tens of thousands of cases of torture, illegal arrests and other rights violations were reported.

- SAPA

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  morgan tsvangirai  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

CAR ceasefire 'broken'

54 minutes ago

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Tuesday Goodwood - 09:10 AM
    Road name: N7 Vanguard Drive Southbound
    DELAYS towards Voortrekker Road
  • Tuesday Belhar - 09:08 AM
    Road name: Stellenbosch Arterial Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Symphony Way
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Torch 9810

The BlackBerry Torch 9810 gives you the powerful combination of...

From R2740.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Something may come up to alert you of your security needs. It may be that you need to create a better structure for your finances...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.