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Archive for the ‘Zimbabwe’ Category

Moeletsi Mbeki Predicted an “Arab Spring” Youth Uprising in South Africa – Back in April (Video)

Advocates for ChangeArchitects of PovertyIn an interview earlier this year Moeletsi Mbeki, economist and editor of Advocates for Change: How to Overcome Africa’s Challenges, predicted the student protests that have shaken up South Africa for the past month.

Mbeki, who was interviewed by Trust Matsilele for CNBC Africa, characterised South Africa as “a bomb waiting to explode, all it needs is a little match to spark it and it will go up in flames”. He said that the country was moving towards an “Arab Spring” type uprising because of the shortage of opportunities and useful employment, particularly for the youth.

Mbeki also commented that military reactions against protesters are fruitless; only employment will curb young people’s restless frustration.

Watch the video:


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South Africa has an Unhealthy Dependency on China and its Demand for Minerals – Moeletsi Mbeki

Advocates for ChangeArchitects of PovertyMoeletsi Mbeki, political commentator and author of Advocates for Change: How to Overcome Africa’s Challenges and Architects of Poverty: Why Africa’s Capitalism needs Changing, was recently called on by Iman Rappetti to speak about China’s “Black Monday” on her Power FM show.

In the podcast, Mbeki speaks about the links between the Chinese economy and the South African economy, and why the dip in the Chinese currency affected this country.

Mbeki says there is a problem in the economic relations between the two countries. Because South Africa sells a large amount of minerals to China, a shrinkage in that country’s demand has a dramatic effect on employment and development here. South Africa should have focused on diversifying its economic product in the past 21 years to avoid a situation of dependency.

Listen to the podcast:


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Songezo Zibi Comments on Thabo Mbeki’s Response to the Khampepe Report on the 2002 Zimbabwe Elections

Raising the BarSongezo Zibi, Business Day editor and author of Raising the Bar: Hope and Renewal in South Africa, has written an article on Thabo Mbeki’s response to accusations the Mail & Guardian made about him subverting democracy during Zimbabwe’s 2002 elections.

Zibi outlines the responsibility Mbeki had to the people of Zimbabwe, and how he let them down. Now, 12 years later, Zimbabwe is still mired in a system of undemocratic entitlement.

Zibi says that “No single election is ever the sum total of the credibility of a democracy”, but each free and fair election plays a part in creating a legitimate democracy. He believes that if Mbeki had acted differently then, Zimbabwe would be a different nation now.

Read the article:

While the attentions of the South African public were occupied by events in Parliament, in Ferguson, Missouri and elsewhere, the ousted former president of the republic, Thabo Mbeki, penned a long Dear John letter to the Mail & Guardian. He is very unhappy and, in his eloquent style, went on to explain why, as preordained, he was right and the Mail & Guardian was wrong to accuse him of conniving to subvert democracy in Zimbabwe during the 2002 presidential elections.

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Video: Moeletsi Mbeki Joins Redi Tlhabi on South2North to Discuss Foreign Aid

Advocates for ChangeArchitects of PovertyMoeletsi Mbeki believes “there is a great deal of exaggeration about China’s relations with African countries”. On Redi Tlhabi’s talk show, South2North, on Al Jazeera, Mbeki discussed foreign aid, saying that he feels it is the regulation of the African countries that is problematic, rather than China itself being the problem.

Watch the full show:

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Picador 40th Special Edition: Mukiwa by Peter Godwin

MukiwaPicador has been publishing the finest books from across the globe since 1972. Amongst a number of publishing initiatives to celebrate Picador’s 40th anniversary are these Picador Africa classics reissued in a beautiful new style. Each book includes a sixteen-page section of additional material.

In Mukiwa, Peter Godwin tells the story of growing up in Rhodesia in the 1960s, inhabiting a frightening world of leopard-hunting, witch doctors and forest fires.

As an adolescent, a conscript caught in the middle of civil war, and as an adult who returned to Zimbabwe as a journalist to cover the bloody transition to majority rule, Godwin discovered a land stalked by death and danger.

Praise for Mukiwa

“It makes you laugh even while you’re weeping.” – Fiammetta Rocco, The Literary Review

“A searing and brilliant piece of writing, a lasting literary and personal achievement…If you are to read only one book about that place and time, make it Mukiwa, by Peter Godwin.” Sunday Independent

“Rarely short of mesmerizing, Mukiwa is extraordinary.” – San Francisco Review

About the author

Peter Godwin is the author of When a Crocodile Eats the Sun, published by Picador in 2006 and The Fear (2010). He writes for various publications, including the New York Times magazine, National Geographic and Vanity Fair. He lives in Manhattan.

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Podcast: Jenny Crwys-Williams Talks to Moeletsi Mbeki About Advocates for Change

Advocates for ChangeAdvocates for change, edited by Moeletsi Mbeki, could be seen as following on from his first book, Architect of Poverty, which was published in 2009 and sold as many as 27 000 copies.

Where Architects of poverty‘s main focus is “finding the culprits for the poverty of Africa”, Mbeki set about finding solutions to the problem of poverty and other challenges facing Africa with the new book. He brought together experts from across the continent, who offered their insights on economic, political and social issues.

Jenny Crwys-Williams spoke to Mbeki about Advocates for Change on her Talk Radio 702 show, inviting the public to phone in and discuss pertinent questions with the author (the interview with Mbeki starts about 7 minutes into the podcast):

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Meet Peter Godwin at Novel Books, Bryanston

Meet Peter Godwin at  Novel Books

The Fear: The Last Days of Robert Mugabe

Picador and Novel Books invite you to join award-winning author Peter Godwin in discussion about his latest book, The Fear: The Last Days of Robert Mugabe, on Voting Day, Wednesday 18 May.

Godwin will be in conversation with John Quirk. We’ll see you at Novel Books!

Event Details

  • Date: Wednesday, 18 May 2011
  • Time: 6:00 PM for 6:30 PM
  • Venue: Novel Books, Shop F8A
    Hobart Grove Shopping Centre
    Cnr Hobart & Grosvenor Roads
    Johannesburg | Map
  • Guest Speaker: Quirk John
  • RSVP: , 011 463 9320

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Christopher Hitchens on Peter Godwin, The Fear and the Sins of Zimbabwe’s Mugabe

The FearIf you want a catalogue of Robert Mugabe’s sins, writes Christopher Hitchens – along with a glimpse at a new way of politics, currently germinating in Zimbabwe – then look no further than Peter Godwin’s latest:

Writing on all this some years ago, Peter Godwin opted for the view that Mugabe wasn’t explicable by any change in circumstances or personality. He had had the heart and soul of a tyrant all along, and simply waited until he could give the tendency an unfettered expression. Even though I have a quasi-psychological theory of my own—that Mugabe became corroded by jealousy of the adulation heaped on Nelson Mandela—I now think that this is almost certainly right. In the Sino-Soviet split that divided African nationalists in the 1960s and 1970s (with the ANC of South Africa, for example, clearly favoring the Soviet Union) Mugabe was not just pro-Chinese. He was pro-North Korean.

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Double Podcast: Peter Godwin Talks to Brian Lehrer and Marco Werman on The Fear

The FearPeter Godwin, author of The Fear was interviewed by Brian Lehrer of New York’s WNYC radio station, where he spoke about his latest book and gave an update on the situation in Zimbabwe. In a second recent interview, Godwin spoke to Public Radio International anchor Marco Werman about the psychology of dictators who remain in power, comparing Zimbabwe to the current situation in Ivory Coast.

Godwin on the Brian Lehrer show:

Godwin speaks to Marco Werman of PRI:

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Exerpt from Peter Godwin’s The Fear, With Carrot

The FearZimbabwe, a country in shackles of its own making, is guilty of “politicide”, as we learn in Peter Godwin’s account of the last Zimbabwean elections, The Fear, which tracks the near-wiping out of an opposition movement.

The persecution hasn’t stopped. With fresh elections mooted – possibly – for this year, four of Zimbabwe’s opposition members of parliament are in custody on bogus corruption charges. A reporter in Zimbabwe talks about the anxiety that once again seizes the nation:

So the culture of fear sets in, and the people are cowed into resistance, discussing their fate in hushed tones and only with people they trust to share the same sentiments. And the fear rots us from the core, eats at us until the day they herd us to the ballot box and we speak in overwhelming numbers … again.

And the US Embassy in Harare tweets, today, that the arrests continue:

Credible sources have informed us Energy Minister Elton Mangoma of #MDC-T was re-arrested in #Harare this morning. Will try to get details.less than a minute ago via web

Susan Gilman of NPR reviewed Godwin’s The Fear and featured an excerpt from the book. Says Gilman, “In the hands of a less talented writer, The Fear could have become simply too painful to read. But while Godwin spares us nothing, he writes with such compassion, poetry and ironic humor that you cannot put his book down”:

When I teach writing, I remind students that real villains aren’t like cartoons: They don’t cackle, “When my evil plan succeeds, the world will be mine!”

But after reading Peter Godwin’s harrowing book, The Fear: Robert Mugabe and the Martyrdom of Zimbabwe, I’m not so sure.

Godwin grew up in what had been Rhodesia. He witnessed the war of liberation and Mugabe’s rise to power. He saw Zimbabwe flourish — then curdle.

Here’s the excerpt from the book:

Deep into the night, in pursuit of the westward escaping sun, we fly into a fogbank, where the cold Atlantic breakers curdle upon the warm West African shore below. Consoled, somehow, to have reached the continent of my birth, I lay down my book and fall uncomfortably asleep, my head wedged against the buzzing fuselage.

I am on my way home to Zimbabwe, to dance on Robert Mugabe’s political grave. The crooked elections he has just held have spun out of his control, and after twenty-eight years the world’s oldest leader is about to be toppled. When I arrive the next evening in Harare, the capital, his portrait is everywhere still, staring balefully down at us. From the walls of the airport, as the immigration officer harvests my U.S. dollars, sweeping them across his worn wooden counter, and softly thumping a smudged blue visa into my passport. From the campaign placards pasted to the posts of the broken street lights, during our feral packs of hollow-chested dogs, he raises his fist into the sultry dome of night, as though blaming the fates for his mutinous subjects.

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