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Women’s political participation not an act of charity

By  Blessing Vava    File picture: Is engaging Kenyan women in security affairs the key to creating better policies? Photo: Mari...

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

NCA Chairperson Prof Madhuku calls on the EU to support far reaching reform efforts

Copanhagen- The National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) chairperson Professor Lovemore Madhuku today called on the EU
to support far reaching reform agenda being presented by the civil society in Zimbabwe. Profesor Madhuku said this while addressing EU parliamentarians in Copanhagen,  at a meeting  organized by the Zimbabwe EU Network at the EU Parliament and hosted by the Chris Steward Agnew MEP UK on Zimbabwe the new constitution and way forward to a free and fair election.

At the meeting  the constitutional law expert warned that listening to politicians and political parties alone will not be adequate to giving meaningful support to the reform agenda.
File photo-Professor Madhuku addressing villagers in Mhondoro

“The current situation requires that the EU work closely with the regional block (SADC) if they want to be relevant to the resolution of
the Zimbabwean crisis. But ultimately the key stakeholders are Zimbabweans themselves. We call on the EU to invest much more in civil society if Zimbabwe is to realize a real democratic change,” said the NCA leader.

Madhuku told the parliamentarians that there are three groups of people who are all engaged in a struggle. The first group being Mugabe
and his political elites who are clearly engaged in a struggle to remain in power.

He argued that the second group is the opposition political elites who are engaged in a struggle for Mugabe to ‘’go.’’

The third and last group being Zimbabweans who believe that their struggle is for a much more far deeper reform agenda which do encompass the Mugabe must go discourse but looks beyond just his replacement to a much more opening democratic space.

Prof Madhuku warned that with the current environment it is not
possible to have a free and fair election.

Munjodzi Mutandiri, NCA Regional Coordinator, who is accompanying the NCA chairperson updated the meeting on the levels of violence in the country. Mutandiri said the
NCA campaign to end political violence has been mobilizing communities to help stop the scourge of violence.

Meanwhile the NCA delegation addressed the Danish portfolio committee on foreign affairs at the Danish parliament. Later today there are scheduled to address a seminar at Centre of African Studies, University of Copenhagen / Auditorium 12 / Købmagergade 46, 4th DK-1150 Copenhagen K, under the topic, " Political Challenges in Zimbabwe's Transition." NCA Publicity

Monday, 21 November 2011

ZANU PF Congress.....day of reckoning?

By Blessing Vava

Hanging on....ZANU PF's Leader Robert Mugabe
It’s now barely two weeks before the watershed ZANU PF conference which has been turned into a congress obviously to address certain issues that have been troubling the ‘revolutionary’ party. Of great note is the succession debate that has almost torn ZANU PF into pieces as they seem numb and clueless on who is going to take over from Mugabe. In recent years we have been getting media reports about the factionalism and infighting within ZANU PF, which the party has been dismissing with contempt. But as events have been unfolding it is now a reality that ZANUPF is now in limbo with two main opposing factions all fighting to succeed Mugabe.

We all know that usually, congresses award organisations or parties with an opportunity to elect new leaders and adoption of new policies. But this has not been the case in ZANU PF since independence as Mugabe has never been challenged at any congress to date. And as we approach this December congress nothing much should be expected in solving ZANU PF’s complicated succession debate. It is unlikely that Mugabe is going to step down instead he will use the December meeting as a time for retribution mainly to those opposing him as revealed by the wikileaks.  The December congress will also endorse Mugabe as their  presidential candidate.
Eyeing presidency...Emmerson Mnangagwa

The revelations in the wikileaks  implicating some of his top officials angered Mugabe and its no longer a secret that they want him to go.   In this regard the president   no longer trusts anyone close to him even his beloved wife Grace who according to the cables had discussions about his weaknesses with the Governor of the Reserve Bank Gideon Gono.

However, he still has some bootlickers who have not been tainted by the wilkileaks. These are individuals like Simon Khaya Moyo, Rugare Gumbo, Didymus Mutasa, Webster Shamu to mention just a few. Some of these individuals have been amplifying their voices in praise singing the octogenarian leader maybe to play it safe ahead of congress. They even called for stiffer punishments to the alleged offenders. Mugabe is one man who does not easily forgive. There are many who foolishly think that Mugabe is isolated, wounded and that his days are numbered. Never think that all those implicated in the wikileaks will all get the same punishment. The answer is NO. Obviously the weak ones, in Mugabe’s eyes are going to face the guillotine and some will be left.
President Mugabe is like cremora...Webster Shamu
ZANU PF  National Commissar
The wikileaks weakened the Mujuru faction  the most  and the Mnangagwa’s side is pushing Mugabe to act decisively on those implicated.  Statements by Jonathan Moyo can reveal their position already.

What happened in Tsholotsho is a typical example of how Mugabe is likely going to deal with the wikigate scandal. In the Tsholotsho meeting  some senior ZANU PF officials were planning to topple the presidium but luck ran out when their botched plan was exposed before execution. When  their plan was revealed, not all of them faced the music. For some reasons known to Mugabe himself,  Patrick Chinamasa and Mnangwagwa were forgiven despite their direct or indirect role in that plot. The other provincial chairpersons were suspended and some of them are now in the political wilderness.

Brains behind Tsholotsho...Jonathan Moyo
Mugabe like  many  dictators, uses the divide and rule politics and that’s the exact way he is going to approach the Wikigate saga. Hence it is foolhardy, naive and parochial  to assume that ZANU PF is going to split  soon simply  because some senior ZANU PF  politicians indicated that there are tired of Mugabe. Consequently Mugabe is now fighting for his own survival, what he wants now is to secure a victory in next year’s elections if they are ever going to be held that time. His deteriorating  health is another factor that has been giving him sleepless nights.  Seemingly his greatest drawback might be the constitution making process that has been dragging for long and he would have wanted it to be completed as early as yesterday.

However it might not be a big issue as he might force the election even before a new constitution with ease. The June 27 election are an example and he is prepared for another GNU. But seemingly ZANU PF desperately wants an early election and then work out the transition challenges using the provisions on succession which in amendment number 18.  For many Zimbabweans the issue of elections is a  scary subject and they prefer having them in 2013 or later because without meaningful reforms i.e media, security and electoral will lead to a compromised poll. For that reason participating in that election will directly or indirectly mark a total capitulation to the forces of coercion and violence.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Eye-Water dumps MiC Inity

By Blessing Vava

For  years he has been the main curtain raiser of popular reggae crooner’s show MiC Inity, Chivhu born dancehall artiste Eye-Water has decided to go it alone. The name Eye-Water is not new especially  to those who frequent Red Fox Hotel on Fridays or the Mannernburg  Restraunt in Harare were MiC Inity usually hold his shows and they can testify that the dreadlocked is a genius on the microphone. As the main curtain raiser Eye-Water is a favourite to many because of his immense talent and had become a hit at MiC Inity’s shows.

In an exclusive interview Eye-Water said that he felt that he had now matured enough and it was now time to do his own staff. ‘’I feel this is time that i do my own staff because i cannot be a curtain raiser for life,’’ said the soft spoken artist. He however dismissed speculation that he had a fallout with MiC Inity indicating that MiC Inity was more like a brother to him.  ‘’Me and MiC have come a long way and we have been working well together since 2008,’’ Eye-Water added.

 Born Gerald Masara on the 26th of July 1987 in Chivhu, Eye-Water was schooled in the City of Kings, Bulawayo at Milton Boys High school from primary to High school.  It was at Milton Primary School that Masara was first involved in the arts when joined the theatre club. On the music scene Eye-Water said that he was identified by veteran musician and producer Isaac Chirwa who encouraged him to take music seriously as a career. Since then the dreadlocked artist has never looked back.

 Unlike his colleague MiC Inity who has been concentrating on playing cover versions from Jamaican musicians, Eye-Water has several compositions from his upcoming album and  he has been playing them at his shows. The 12 track album titled Zimbabwe,   has dancehall, hip-hop and conscious tracks that will certainly be hits to many dancehall music lovers.   The album was produced by Jamaican born producer MacGyver and Ice Rain at their Blue Stone and Law Gun studios respectively and will be marketed by Zim One records.

On his career, Eye-Water said that he wants to extended his territory and not been confirmed in Harare alone. He has since assembled a band and has lined up a number of live shows this festive season. ‘’I have realised that without  a live band you cannot grow in the music industry and i guess this is the reason why Winky D is now playing with a live band,’’ he said.  

Friday, 4 November 2011

Leave Utakataka alone Mr Chosa

By Blessing Vava

NB: This article was written on the 1st of November after an article published in the Herald titled Squabbles rock Utakataka Express 

The late Sungura giant Tongai Moyo is one musician whose humble background and hard work earned him a place in Zimbabwe’s premier league of musicians. He transformed  his backing group, the Utakataka Express, a four men piece to an 18 men formidable outfit .  Since the groups formation in the mid 90s, the band went through difficult times  with misfortunes which range from deaths of band members and accidents which at one time wiped out Dhewa’s instruments. 

But nevertheless Dhewa worked hard to keep his band intact though some members left the outfit at different occasions.   As leader of the outfit he also delegated certain roles especially those of management to other people and not necessarily centralising everything to himself. So far a number of individuals have had their chance to manage the Kwekwe based band to date. Names like  the late  Munemi ‘Mavara’ Mavurambudzi, Pliers Pauraene,  Knowledge Chosa and lately the popular chanter Shiga Shiga, being some of the names to manage Utakataka Express.

But it was last year that the late musician fired his manager, nephew and former bouncer Knowldge Chosa, who  was then replaced by Shiga Shiga.  Though it was not clear why Chosa was shown the door speculation was rife that time that Chosa, a former bouncer  had failed dismally as manager hence his firing.  Though there is a saying that blood is thicker than water,  Dhewa had to drop his nephew Chosa and opting for a foreigner, Shiga Shiga to assume control of the band’s affairs an indication that Chosa was incapable.  Since the day Shiga Shiga assumed control of the band he became one of 
Dhewa’s most trusted lieutenants and stood by him till the day we lost him.

Sadly,  barely a  month after Dhewa’s death  they have been reports that Chosa has bounced back again and this time wielding an axe and a hammer. He has since stripped Shiga Shiga of his role as manager and thus  appointing  himself to run the affairs  of the band. What is surprising however is  that Dhewa himself realised Chosa’s shortcomings in 2010 and that’s why he was relieved of his duties. Now he is taking advantage that Dhewa is nomore. From the look of things it is clear that Chosa is out to destroy Dhewa’s legacy by forcibly taking control of the band from Shiga.

He failed in 2010 and now he is back again to cause confusion in an outfit that needs a unifier at such a time as this. His moves are a  clear demonstration of lack of professionalism that many critics have been writing about. I have always been arguing in my previous writings that music outfits should be run professionally and that they should have clear succession plans in case the band leader dies. Music bands are not family entities where one just comes from nowhere and takes his share. In Dhewa’s case it was now apparent that Peter was going to take over and continue from where his father left from.  And we didn’t expect much change in terms of the management part of it.

The band members had agreed that Peter was going to fill his father’s shoes and prepared to work under him  despite the fact that he is still young. These guys know that it was Dhewa’s dream to see his son taking over and I don’t doubt that despite his young age he was going to pull through. And we don’t know how this Chosa guy is coming on board in an outfit that had only one vacancy to fill the place of Dhewa? So Mr Chosa is not needed in this outfit.

The  fact that Peter is still young and needs time to mature  does not call for certified failures like Chosa to rip where they did not sow simply because he was a nephew to Dhewa. Mr Chosa, age is nothing but  just a number, Sulu Chimbetu assumed control of the Dendera Kings at 25 so Peter can still do the same.  With the help of senior band members like Shiga and Spencer

Reading from his comments in the Herald dated 1 November 2011, one can clearly notice that Chosa is a man whose thirst for authority is likely to tear the band apart. His eagerness to take charge of the band is driven by nothing but greed. 

 Noone had expected that family members would intervene in the day to day running of this band, and with the rate at which they  are taking control of happenings it calls for nothing other than solutions that will take the band forward. My personal appeal to Knowledge Chosa is that he should leave Utakataka Express in the hands to those  who were left by Dhewa.

He had his time and failed and what miracle again this time  will make him produce wonders with the band. His interference will definitely tear this band apart if something urgent is not done to stop this unashamed guy.  We appeal to family members, promoters, and other interested parties to guide Utakataka Express and restore sanity so that they continue from where Muchina Muhombe left from.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Local musicians should be supported

By Blessing Vava

During the last few years, more and more international artists have continued to come to do live performances in Zimbabwe. Part of it has been the tourism drive to market Zimbabwe as a tourist friendly destination.

Cocoa Tea vows fans in Bulawayo
Interestingly when they come here most of them get more than they usually get when they perform in their homeland. Imagine a foreign musician getting a whooping $100 000, for an hour performance of playing backtracks without even a backing live band. Usually their expenses, including  accommodation, airfares, would have been catered for, mainly by the sponsors.

  In addition to such a package they have a privilege of visiting the county’s tourist resorts. At most instances we have witnessed some of these great foreign musicians being outclassed by our very own musicians despite the raw deal our local artistes  they usually get from music promoters. 

The treatment given to  our local musicians every time they play  alongside these foreign artists is of great concern. Unlike their foreign counterparts who are  given VIP treatment  when they come, our local artists are not given such an accord.
Winky D doing his Ninja antics at the Beerfest

The much hyped Sean Kingston concert held a few  months back quickly comes to mind, where the young musician produced a mediocre act which irked most music lovers who had parted with their hard earned cash expecting a world class performance. 

Does it mean that our local musicians are of less importance than these foreign guys? I guess it’s high time we support our local musicians so that they also have blossoming careers internationally. The adage that charity begins at home should always be on our minds as Zimbabweans because non but ourselves can lift ourselves from pit holes.

Dendera legends Sulu and Tryson Chimbetu show their guitar skills
Meanwhile last weekend two Jamaican reggae music greats Cocoa Tea and Fantan Moja jetted in the country for the Lion Lager beer festival. I had a chance of attending the Harare show at Glamis arena, which and I must testify that it was an electrifying concert that was also graced by our own local bands who entertained the crowds all night long. However, after enjoying  classic performances from both Dendera musician Sulu Cimbetu and Winky D, I was however disappointed by local reggae musician MiC Inity backed by his Hotta Fire outfit.  

After being given the honours to play just before a great musician like Cocoa T, the Marondera born musician reduced himself to  a mere copycat, playing cover versions one after the other without even dishing out his own compositions. While there is absolutely nothing bad about playing cover versions, I did not expect MiC Inity to  imitate Jamaican artists worse at such an occassion. Obviously when these musicians visit here they would want to have a feel of our beat, and I am quite sure that they will leave Zimbabwe with an impression that we are not a music nation but mere copy cats who  have no identity.  

Copy cat MiC Inity at a show at RedFox Hotel
His lack of originality brewed ire  from most music fans i spoke to during that night expressing dismay at Mic Inity’s performance noting that he had disgraced the music fraternity. Of all the years i have known MiC Inity, since his days with the Transit Crew i had thought by now he would be having at least an album or two with his own compositions. No one doubts that the young man is gifted with a superb voice, but that is not enough if he fails to compose his own music.

Lastly I want to salute Cocoa T for the electric performance that kept fans on their toes. At least he took time to do a rendition Zimbabwe from the late reggae legend Bob Marley, quite a befitting song at such an occasion. A song i had expected to  be played by our local musicians.  Above all the Cocoa T concert was a memorable one despite the absence of Beres Hammond who was also billed to perform but failed to make it. 

Friday, 21 October 2011

Obituary: In memory of Learnmore Judah Jongwe, 1974-2002

This orbituary was written in 2009 during my time as the ZINASU National Spokesperson and published by nehandaradion.com
Obituary: In memory of Learnmore Judah Jongwe, 1974-2002
By Blessing Vava
On the 22nd of October 2009, the Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) will mark the 7th anniversary on the death of one of our illustrious sons and leader Learnmore Judah Jongwe (pictured) who passed away on the 22nd of October 2002 in a prison cell at Chikurubi Maximum Prison.
At the time of his death he was serving as the Member of Parliament Kuwadzana constituency and Spokesperson for the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

Learnmore Jongwe with his wife Rutendo on their wedding day
Learnmore Jongwe with his wife Rutendo on their wedding day
The Movement for Democratic Change President Morgan Tsvangirai blamed Robert Mugabes government for Jongwes death. He said ZANU PF wanted to eliminate as many opposition MPs as possible to create a big enough majority for the ruling ZANU PF party to change the constitution. He was in government custody and, without any explanation of the circumstances [of his death], they are accountable, Mr. Tsvangirai said.
As ZINASU, we are firmly convinced that he was killed by the state while in detention. We remember his revolutionary and unwavering commitment and contribution to the students movement and the nation at large. Jongwe was neither a hawk nor a dove, but a person who dealt with difficult situations in a creative way.

Learnmore Jongwe with then UZ Vice Chancellor Graham Hill
Learnmore Jongwe with then UZ Vice Chancellor Graham Hill
He was remarkably bright and brave; relentless in his fight for justice; unsparing in his criticism of those, even within his own party, who had become a threat to social justice. There can be no denial of Jongwe’s stature as one of the most luminary and inspirational youthful figures of the emergent generation of Zimbabwe’s leaders.
The tremor of disbelief, anger and outrage which shook the country following his murder testifies to the importance of his leadership and the deep significance of his life. Learnmore was born in Samambwa village in Zhombe on the 28TH of April 1974. He did his Advanced Levels at Lower Gwelo Mission from 1993-94 before enrolling at the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) in 1995.He was elected the UZ Student Representative Council (SRC) President in 1996.
In July that same year he led numerous demonstrations at the institution and was later suspended together with his vice president, classmate and friend Daniel Molokela. The students were reinstated after a few weeks.

Gladys Hlatshwayo, Nelson Chamisa, Trust Mamombe, Philip Pasirayi and Pedzisai Ruhanya at the unveiling of Jongwe's tombstone
Gladys Hlatshwayo, Nelson Chamisa, Trust Mamombe, Philip Pasirayi and Pedzisai Ruhanya at the unveiling of Jongwe’s tombstone
As the leader of the UZ SRC, Jongwe was instrumental in the revival of the national students mother body (ZINASU). In March 1997 Jongwe was elected the National President of ZINASU with other luminaries, who included Daniel Molokela as the vice president, Charlton Hwende Secretary General and Job Sikhala, Information and Publicity secretary.
From 1997, he served the students union with passion and commitment, such that ZINASU became a force to reckon within the countrys political landscape. During the 1998 food riots, Jongwe led countywide students protests against the rising cost of living in the country. Jongwe served as ZINASU President from 1997-1999, and was succeeded by Hopewell Gumbo.
At that moment, there were growing seeds of discontentment amongst Zimbabweans because of Mugabes misrule. Together with the working class movement, and the poor masses, the students union played a critical role in the formation of an alternative political force, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
Several comrades from the students union including Tafadzwa Musekiwa,Job Sikhala, Nelson Chamisa went on to grab very influential posts during the newly formed party. Learnmore became the first National Chairperson of the MDC Youth Assembly, and was later succeeded by former Nelson Chamisa who at the time of the formation of the MDC, was at that time the secretary general of ZINASU.
Jongwe later became the Spokesperson of the party, a position he held until the time of his death. As spokesperson of the party, he became a darling of the press because of his eloquence, articulacy and clarity as he debated, defended or when articulating the policies of the party. In one of the televised current affairs debate sessions he outshined and disgraced Sunday Mail columnist and ZANU PF apologist, Tafataona Mahoso. 
His favourite school subject was history; his favourite activities debating and volleyball.
Jongwe was also a devouted christian being an Adventist, he was neither a drinker nor a smoker.
Jongwe was unique in one further respect. Unlike any other leader of the emerging movement, he had a solid urban and rural base. He was a leader of such popular standing in where he came to be regarded increasingly as a unifying figure both rural and urban areas.
His impeccable credentials as ZINASU leader and his charismatic appeal to the alienated youth, gave the MDC credibility among the countrys most disgruntled, volatile constituents. Without him, it has become hard to sell to disadvantaged and oppressed groups any kind of apparent compromise
It is one of the saddest ironies of our time that many of the greatest of student and youth leaders, and indeed many of the brightest beacons of hope for the future, have been assassinated in their prime.
For all Zimbabweans, for all the struggling masses in our world, Learnmore Jongwe’s death, like that of so many other young visionaries killed in the first act of the struggle for democracy Batanai Hadzizi, Christopher Giwa, Lameck Chemvura, Gift Tandare Better Chokururama, Tonderai Ndira, Godfrey Kauzani, Cain Nyeve, Tichaona Chiminya, Talent Mabika, Trymore Midzi- will be more painful if the work for which he laid down his life is not carried forward.
A close friend to the late Learnmore Jongwe, and one of the pioneers of the Learnmore Jongwe Trust, Earnerst Mudzengi said that the death of Jongwe was a painful episode in history. What happened seven years ago was a painful episode in history, we lost a cadre who will be difficult to replace and whose qualities, character and strength would be difficult to get.
Jongwe left behind a daughter, Tawana, now doing grade two. As part of this years commemorations ZINASU and the Friends of Learnmore Jongwe Trust will hold a quill talk in Harare were various speakers who include his friends, family members former student leaders and the current crop of student leadership will address.
As ZINASU, we demand that an independent commission of inquiry be established to look into the death of Jongwe and other comrades, nationalists who died under unclear circumstances. The list includes Batanai Hadzizi, Christopher Giwa, Hebert Chitepo,Eddison Sithole, Rashiwe Guzha and Josiah Magama Tongogara to mention just but a few.We want to remember Jongwe for the light he shed that others might see; for the life he shared so selflessly; and for the vision, the wisdom, the dedication, and compassion he dispensed so generously.

He will be remembered as the husband, father, brother, friend, and comrade that he was. We want to remember him for the cause that he espoused, which turned into his own life’s quest for a humanity liberated from the stranglehold of tyranny, fear, hatred, prejudice, ignorance, and rapaciousness.
Rest in Eternal Peace
Blessing Vava
National Spokesperson
(Zimbabwe National Students Union)

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Orbiruary Tongai Dhewa Moyo

By Blessing Vava

I have always followed the late Tongai Moyo’s music and live performances. I have known fans to mob him and cheer each time he stepped on to the stage. But it was only at the recently held Chibuku Road to fame finals at the Glamis Arena where giants Oliver Mtukudzi, Alick Macheso and Allan Chimbetu were also performing   that  when Dhewa went on stage, it was not the usual happy cheers.
Muchina Muhombe entertains fans at a show

Instead a sombre atmosphere engulfed the whole stadium as the thousands who were in attendance  shook their heads in disbelief seeing how their favourite musician's body had deteriorated due to non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Having known this man as a fighter who did not want his condition to stop him from dishing out his star studded performances had deteriorated so rapidly.

He nevertheless gave his best performance. I and hopefully all other fans, thought the man was going to recover, but unbeknown to me, that was the last time I was to ever see him alive.

 As news of his death on Saturday  the 15th of October filtered, Zimbabweans went into deep mourning.  Dhewa was one of the country’s  finest sungura musicians having carved his own niche of music over the last two decades. A  great entertainer whose outstanding contribution to the music industry is unquestionable. I received the news with great sadness and disbelief,  for he was a musician whose humble beginnings was an inspiration not only to other younger musicians but to all in the entire arts industry.

For a musician who hailed from a small town like Kwekwe it is only hard work and sheer determination to reach the levels of Dhewa. The colourful Kwekwe based musician who was affectionately  known in the music circles with an array of names including Dhewa, Samanyemba, Murozvi Mukuru, igwee, Mopao Mokozi, Father Flower or Muchina Muhombe died on the 15th of September after a long battle with cancer.

I first knew of Dhewa in 1996 when he released his debut album Vimbo, an album laced with classic hits such asChechete,  Chenesayi nzira and Ndinotenda Dhiya to mention but a few. Though the album was well received critics went guns blazing on him accusing him of being a mere Leonard Dembo copy cat, and this marked the beginning of a long musical journey which had its success and wonderful moments that earned him a permanent place as a top sungura musician whose only challenge was self proclaimed sungura king Alick Macheso.

After years of singing what sounded like Dembo's music, Dhewa finally carved his own beat, a fusion of sungura and rhumba and that move earned him respect in the music industry. This is one lesson young musicians should learn from the late sungura maestro that music is all about originality if you are to make it in this highly competitive industry.

For years i had been a Macheso fan who rarely missed his shows but it was Dhewa’s all time great Zvinoita murudo from the album Chingwa that transformed me into a great follower of his music.    Dhewa was a sungura musician with a  difference, he  redefined the fashion of sungura artists where in the past sungura musicians were identified with shabby dressing but he was always smartly dressed.   

He had style, swag and full of confidence and he changed the complexion of live performances by his well choreographed and unmatched performances equalled to none in the local music fraternity so far. Gifted with a great voice, composing and guitar playing skills, Dhewa was a polished entertainer whose departure will be sadly missed by the entire nation and even beyond.

Many had hoped that after managing to acquire the much needed drug to save his life, he was going make it and hopefully carry on with his work. But sadly that was not to be, as the man above called decided that his time was now up and called him home to rest, in a painful way though.

During his last shows you could hear Dhewa chanting, mandiregerera, (you are letting me down) maybe this was in reference to  those in the arts industry whom he felt they  had left him at the greatest time of need. Surely Dhewa had to struggle on his own for six months to raise US$15 000 to raise his medical bills. This is despite statements by some musicians and promoters who promised to assist Dhewa but nothing materialised until his condition became critical. Maybe had it that the  funds  had been availed for Dhewa’s medication the story could have been different today. Dhewa’s death is a call to in the arts industry to assist one another when befallen by such unexpected calamities.

We should not wait until the situation gets worse like what happened to Dhewa. His death has also exposed Zimbabwe’s decaying health delivery systems, for with better and up to date medical facilities Dhewa could have lived long. He has gone but his great works will continue to entertain us. We all hope that those he left behind, Peter and the rest of the Utakataka Express ensemble  will continue from were Muchina Muhombe left from.

Sungura musician Alick Macheso consoles Dhewa's wife
Dhewa's son Peter to take over Utakataka Express
They should remain focused, united and determined for them to remain a force reckon even despite that Dhewa is nolonger there. Peter should be inspired by Sulu, Tryson and the Dembo brothers who are keeping their late father’s legacies. 

Rest in peace our great musician till we meet again. 

Harvest House fracas deeper than WikiLeaks

Harvest House fracas deeper than WikiLeaks


Disturbances that rocked Harvest House last week are a result of ongoing factional feuding and not cable disclosures that some senior MDC-T members allegedly undermined party leader Morgan Tsvangirai during discussions with United States diplomats.

Political analysts say the fracas that characterised the MDC-T national executive meeting was a result of long-standing unresolved feuds which were aggravated at the party’s congress held in Bulawayo early this year.

MDC-T leaders on Wednesday said the ghost of October 12, 2005 had returned to haunt them after a heated debate over the WikiLeaks cables degenerated into near fisticuffs pitting Senator Morgan Femai and Thamsanqa Mahlangu, Nkulumane MP, against national organising secretary Nelson Chamisa and Charlton Hwende, a member of the national executive of MDC-T.
MDC Organising Secretary Nelson Chamisa
The analysts said Tsvangirai should stamp his authority and work to mend divisions within his party if he had any hopes of winning the next election.

Tsvangirai’s spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka played down the mêlée at Harvest House saying: 

“The Prime Minister’s position is a matter of public record. His position is the position of his party which position was taken by the national council when it met on 10 December 2010, which is to the effect that Wikileaks are a non-issue in the MDC.”

But analysts said the real reason behind the near fists incidents had little to do with the leaked US diplomatic cables, but long-standing power struggles within the MDC-T.

“I do not think it’s about WikiLeaks,” said Charles Mangongera, a Harare–based analyst. 

“WikiLeaks revelations are being used to settle scores. What we are seeing is post- Barbourfields unhealed wounds. It is indicative of unresolved tensions not only at Harvest House, but in other structures of the party.”

Mangongera said individuals that lost at the congress were now fighting back, adding party leader Tsvangirai should quickly move in to stamp his authority.

“I do not know what the party should do because I thought people should respect democracy. Those that lost at Barbourfields are looking at opportunities to fight back,” he said. 

Political observer Blessing Vava agrees. 

“The chaos is obviously emanating from the congress power struggles. These are mere personality differences which are neither ideological nor objective. It also signals the power struggles and succession battles within the party,” he said. 
Political Commentantor Blessing Vava

Vava said those agitating for the party to discuss disclosures in leaked US diplomatic cables were undermining the leadership which had resolved the matter was a “non- event”.

“The party had made a position that the WikiLeaks saga is now water under the bridge, but surprisingly some executive members are still raising the matter which signals that they have other scores to settle,” he said.

Mutare–based social commentator James Mupfumi said while factionalism was the main reason behind the disturbances at Harvest House, the WikiLeaks disclosures had evidently wreaked havoc in both the MDC-T and in Zanu PF.

“Obviously, the bottom line is factionalism which has been brewing in these two parties over a while,” Mupfumi said from Mutare.

“Both Zanu PF and MDC want the public to believe that they have not been deeply affected by the WikiLeaks revelations, but an honest assessment here will tell you that both leaders of these parties will eventually carry out serious purges and they will be victims.”