Footsteps Through Time

Footsteps Through Time
A History of Travel and Tourism to the Victoria Falls -

Friday, 15 December 2017

Vehicle Toll Fees for Victoria Falls Bridge

VICTORIA FALLS, December 15 (The Source) – Vehicles using the Victoria Falls bridge between Zimbabwe and Zambia will have to pay up to $30 in toll fees from next year, as the two countries say they need to raise funds to maintain the facility.

The two neighbours share the 110 year old bridge, whose maintenance is carried out by the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) and Zambia Railways (ZR).

In a statement, issued on Friday the Emerged Railways Properties, a joint company owned by NRZ and ZR said the toll fees will come into effect from January 1.

“Following the enactment of Statutory Instrument 171 of 2012 in terms of Section 6 of the Toll Roads Act (Chapter 13:13) published in the government gazette dated 2 November 2012, all motorists traversing the Zambia-Zimbabwe border of Victoria Falls are hereby notified the Emerged Railways Properties will commence the collection of Toll Fees for the use of the Victoria Falls Bridge effective 1 January 2017,” the statement reads.

The Road Transport and Safety Agency (RATSA) will collect the fees on behalf of the two governments at the two border posts and entry points to the bridge.

Haulage trucks will pay $30 while buses and mini buses which are mostly used by tour operators on a daily basis will fork out $7 and $5 per entry respectively.

Heavy vehicles will part with $10 while taxis and small vehicles below two tonnes will be exempted, according to the statement.

The bridge, said ERP in the statement, is key to the socio-economic life of both countries as well as the SADC region hence the need for regular maintenance for it to cope with increasing levels of traffic.

“It is against this background that the government of Zambia and Zimbabwe have resolved to put in place the requisite legal instrument for the tolling of the bridge.

The Victoria Falls toll fees will be used specifically for the refurbishment and maintenance of the bridge in order to guarantee its long term existence.”

The bridge was constructed in 1905 by the Cleveland Bridge and Engineering Company and is the gateway to the Sadc region.

Source: Zimbabwe, Zambia introduce toll fees for Victoria Falls Bridge (15/12/17)

Thursday, 14 December 2017

$60m mall planned for Victoria Falls

One of the country’s largest indigenous fuel retailers, Glow Petroleum, has revealed plans to establish a $60 million mall in Victoria Falls with work set to begin in 2019, NewsDay has established.
In an interview with NewsDay on the sidelines of the company’s launch ceremony on Friday, Glow Petroleum managing director Aaron Chinhara said, all was set for the establishment of the mall dubbed, The African Mall, in the resort town.
“The Victoria Falls project is starting end of 2019. We want to believe that maybe by then the economy would have risen from its slumber. That one, we are going to use an average of about $60 million because we are going to construct a mall there,” Chinhara said.
The project is set to create more than 1 500 jobs directly and 500 indirectly.
“We want to make sure that the mall that we are going to construct in Victoria Falls will give a facelift on the CBD of Victoria Falls because if you look at Victoria Falls today, you see an old Victoria Falls yet it is enhancing the magnificent Victoria Falls which is one of the seven wonders of the world,” he said.
“Therefore, we must create a mall which is associated with one of the seven wonders of the world and we want to believe
God-willing we will to do it.”
On Friday, Glow Petroleum officially opened its second service station in Bulawayo valued at $1,5 million.
The outlet is located along Plumtree Road. Speaking at the launch ceremony, Chinhara said there were many investment opportunities in Matabeleland region.
“This country will never be built by borrowing from China or America or from elsewhere. It can be built by Zimbabweans when we do the right things. In Matabeleland we have realised that there are a lot of opportunities,” he said.
He said the banking sector in Zimbabwe was not willing to support them as a company because they considered them “small”.
Glow Petroleum is an indigenous company with branches in Harare, Bulawayo, Kadoma, Hwange, Gwanda Rusape, Chiredzi, and Triangle among others.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Victoria Falls: Tide turns against tourism elephant rides

TOUR operators in Victoria Falls are slowly giving in to pressure from international tourism agents to stop elephant ride activities on claim of abuse to wildlife.

International animal activists and agents who bring clients to local tour operators have reportedly set conditions to halt elephant rides or risk losing market benefits for their products and services. Animal activities such as elephant ride and lion walk were given up to end of this month to close, a development whose effects will be felt in the tourism sector judging by the amount of business they contribute to the industry.

Wildlife activists and conservationists say the move is aimed at promoting green tourism. Speaking during an educational elephant interaction for pupils from Townsend High School in Bulawayo and Sacred Heart Primary School in Esigodini at Wild Horizons on Friday, Green Line Africa director, Mrs Veronica Chapman, said the tour operator (Wild Horizons) was the first to stop the activity.

Green Line is an international organisation, which draws membership from tour operators worldwide.

"Wild Horizons is now a member of Green Tourism and has been accredited for its initiative of ending elephant rides.

"International animal activists view elephant ride as cruelty hence they have advocated for what is called "elephant experience" where people get to have a close interaction with elephants without having to ride on them," she said.

Elephant interaction involves feeding the jumbos and patting them without riding on them. The pupils won a quiz competition organised by Sanganai/Hlanganani Tourism Expo this year and were rewarded with a trip to interact with elephants among other activities in Victoria Falls. Wild Horizons runs a schools programme where they host pupils every Friday to teach them about various environmental issues.

Employers' Association for Tourism and Safari Operations Association president, Mr Clement Mukwasi, who is also spokesperson for Shearwater Adventures, said operators were slowly transitioning.

He, however, decried the move saying it will lead to loss of jobs for dozens of people.

"Companies are not abruptly ending the elephant rides but instead they are inducting on programmes that will eventually see the retirement of those animals.

"The animals are creating employment to the people who manage them. What's needed is to ensure that their retirement is done systematically without causing loss of jobs and pain to handlers who will all now be rendered jobless," said Mr Mukwasi

He said some operators were still doing the activity but at a low scale as they are now working on phasing it out. More than 90 percent of tourists who enjoy elephant rides come from international agents.

The activities have stopped in Botswana and South Africa and pressure is now on Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Zambian tour operators who offer elephant rides have advertised to their clients that they would stop on December 31.

Adventure Zone, Elephant Express, Shearwater are some of the companies that offer elephant rides in Victoria Falls while Lion Encounter does lion walks.

Source: Victoria Falls elephant rides stopped (05/12/17)

More: Pressure on Zim to stop activities involving wild animals (16/06/17)
Zambian operator to phase out elephant-back safaris (17/01/17)

Download: Breaking Africa's Elephants - Exposing the rise of cruel tourist rides World Animal Protection Canada [pdf download, external source]

More from this blog: elephant-back safaris : captive-animal interactions

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Elephant killed in Livingstone

Officers from the Department of National Parks and Wildlife have gunned down an elephant after it charged at an electrician who was fixing an electric fence at a named lodge in Livingstone.
National Parks Senior Area Warden, Lewis Daka, says the elephant was gunned down as a control measure to save human lives.
Mr. Daka has however appealed to residents, cross border traders and tourists to take precautions whenever they walk through the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park.
He says officers from the Department of National Parks and Wildlife cannot be everywhere at the same time, hence the need for individuals to be alert at all times.
Meanwhile, the number of people killed by elephants in Livingstone, this month, has risen to four after another person was killed near Simoonga area, last week.
Earlier this month, a security guard and two tourists were killed by elephants in the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

14 elephants found dead, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) is investigating a matter of 14 elephants found dead on Friday in Victoria Falls,13 of which were killed 9 months ago.

Sources close to investigations allege members of Zambezi camp rangers were on patrol in Zambezi National Park where they found 13 elephant carcasses fully decomposed and one elephant killed three days after.

"We are investigating a case of poaching in Matebeland North were 14 elephants were killed and the carcasses were found in Kazungula airstrip about 3km off road by game rangers, said the source.

" All the elephant carcasses are valued at 700 000, in total five (5) tusks were recovered weighing 50.5kg altogether and valued at $512 625.

"Thirteen of the elephant are suspected to have been given cyanide in fruits while the other is suspected to have died naturally.

"Thus tasks were sent to Zambezi camp for safe keeping.

"Investigations are underway at ZRP Victoria Falls under RRB number 3362074."

Meanwhile, according to Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife records elephant poaching is on the increase in Matebeland North, in October 13 poisoned by cyanide outside Victoria Falls in Fuller Forest and Chikandakubi area.

Source: 14 elephants found dead, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe (20/11/17)

More: Elephant poisoning pair acquitted (23/11/17)

Friday, 17 November 2017

Zimbabwe on high alert for earthquakes

ZIMBABWE is on high alert for earthquakes caused by climate change as the country has been increasingly experiencing earth tremors, a Cabinet Minister has said.

Speaking during the 2018 Parliamentary pre-budget seminar in Victoria Falls last Friday, Water and Climate Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri said earthquakes were more pronounced in the Zambezi Valley.

"Zimbabwe is being revisited regularly by seismic disasters (earthquakes). We have had 50 seismic disasters so far since last year and we need our scientists to begin looking into these issues so that we are able to come up with policies to advise on how dams and even buildings would be constructed.

"In the past, earthquakes were not a concern but now regularly we are experiencing these in the Zambezi Valley. There is a possibility that these seismic disasters can be of high magnitude destroying infrastructure and causing deaths," she said.

Muchinguri-Kashiri said earthquakes were mostly predominant when the level of water in the Kariba Dam is low and very high.

"So we want to advise particularly on Batoka as we construct Batoka what are the measures that we take so that we don't lose lives and infrastructure like our major dams," she said.

Zimbabwe and Zambia have proposed the construction of the $4 billion Batoka Hydro-electric power plant along the Zambezi River and it is envisaged to produce 1 600 megawatts.

Muchinguri-Kashiri said in the 2017/18 weather forecast, the country expects normal to above normal rains culminating in high inflows into dams as well as high discharge of ground water with chances of flooding.

Like Zimbabwe experienced in the 2016/17 season, she said, chances of flooding were predictable in the upcoming season.

She said the country needs to strengthen its early warning systems in low-lying areas such as Tsholotsho, Malipati, Gokwe, Muzarabani, Middle Sabi and Chicuala-cuala.

"Bearing in mind this potential disastrous situation we are faced with, my ministry has seen the need to vigorously pursue an ambitious water harvesting programme to improve the lives of people at grassroots level to ensure that we don't run dry," said Muchinguri-Kashiri.

She said her Ministry strongly believes the country requires radar systems to advice on disasters.

Muchinguri-Kashiri said it was imperative for Government to adapt to climate change by setting aside funding to mitigate the adverse effects of earthquakes.

"While we appreciate the challenges that the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development is experiencing, over and above even under very difficult circumstances we have successfully secured some funds and sometimes mitigated disasters," she said.

Source: Zimbabwe on high alert for earthquakes (13/11/17)

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Victoria Falls residents demand revenue from Rainforest (Zimbabwe)

Chronicle Reporters

VICTORIA Falls residents have petitioned Parliament demanding to retain 30 percent of revenue generated from the Rainforest and related parks fees charged at various tour activities to develop local schools, clinics and libraries.

A resident, Mr Godfrey Dube, who led the initiative, handed the petition on behalf of residents to the Speaker of Parliament, Advocate Jacob Mudenda, on Thursday last week on the sidelines of the just ended Parliamentary pre-budget seminar in Victoria Falls. About 600 residents signed the petition.

“This is not a political move but an idea generally spearheaded by concerned residents. We handed the petition to the office of the Speaker of Parliament (Adv Mudenda) on Thursday after gathering about 600 signatures. People want at least 30 percent of gate takings at the Rainforest and from rafting, game drives and bungee jumping where clients pay parks fees,” said Mr Dube.

He said residents also want minors below the age of 15 and the elderly above 65 years to be allowed free entry into the rainforest.

Residents allege that 75 percent of children in the resort town have never visited the Rainforest as they cannot afford entrance fees.

The Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority manages the Rainforest and also collects parks fees from rafting and game drives clients.

Locals pay $7 and $4 each for adults and children respectively while tourists from the Sadc region pay $20.

International tourists pay $30 per individual.

Parks fees range between $10 and $15 depending on the activity. On average 250 000 tourists, 75 percent of them foreign, visit the Rainforest annually.

Mr Dube said they will follow-up on the petition through the local Member of Parliament for Hwange West, Cde Bekithemba Mpofu next week.

The petition, addressed to the Clerk of Parliament and copied to the Minister of Finance, chairperson of the National Budget Committee, Minister of State for Matabeleland North province, Victoria Falls Town Clerk and the Victoria Falls Residents Association read in part:

“As a follow-up to the national budget consultative meeting held at Chinotimba Hall in September 2017 whereby as residents we submitted that we be allocated 30 percent of the total gate takings at gross value from the Rainforest and park fees within our radius, we are hereby cementing our final demand as residents and villagers within this area.

“It’s a fact that government through Zimparks is making a lot of money from our God given resources without locals benefiting anything hence we demand that our local children below the age of 15 and elderly above 65 years be afforded free entrance to the Rainforest as long as they can provide proof”.

Residents want the 30 percent in line with the Community Share Ownership Trust scheme introduced by President Mugabe in 2012.

In a recent interview, Victoria Falls Town Clerk Mr Ronnie Dube said the municipality was engaging authorities over the issue.

“It’s absolutely true that the Rainforest is what makes Victoria Falls and it is part of our natural heritage as locals hence it makes a lot of sense that local people should benefit out of the economic royalties,” he said.

“Victoria Falls Rainforest is our only resource since we don’t have gold or diamonds. We wish government could give an ear to our plea for a share”.


Source: Victoria Falls residents demand revenue from Rainforest (Zimbabwe) (14/11/17)

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Kazungula Pontoon Succumbs To Overloaded Truck

The Kazungula Pontoon, a popular mode of border transport between Zambia and Botswana, on Monday morning succumbed to what appeared to be an overloaded freight-liner.
According to eyewitness, the pontoon failed to sustain the weight of the truck which was reportedly overloaded with assorted goods.

There was no fatality recorded, but it feared that the pontoon may be out of service for a long period.

Monday, 13 November 2017

Livingstone tour operators oppose spin wheel project at Vic Falls

LIVINGSTONE tour operators have wondered what is special about Chinese investor Ju Wenbin for him to be given land in the Victoria Falls area for the construction of a Ferris Wheel similar to that at Disneyland.
And staff at the National Heritage Conservation Commission (NHCC) have challenged their executive director Collins Chipote to tell the nation the truth behind the Chinese investor’s plans to build the Spin-Sational Ferris wheel at Zambia’s only World Heritage Site.
In an interview, Livingstone Tourism Association (LTA) chairperson Alexander Mutali said there was plenty of land within and outside the tourist capital where Ju Wenbin, the chief executive officer of China-Africa Cotton Development Limited could build the Ferris wheel instead of the Victoria Falls.
“We met with the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Arts and Tourism (Liya Mutale) and informed her that we don’t want the Victoria Falls to be de-registered as a World Heritage Site. In as much as we welcome investors, we don’t want posterity to come and judge us harshly, we don’t want them to blame us for having sold their land. We actually asked how special this Chinese investor was to be given land in the Victoria Falls,”
Mutali said.
He said the operators gave Mutale options where the Chinese investor could be given land for the wheel such as near the United Air Charter’s Baobab ridge and also an area in the Musi-oa-Tunya National Park. Mutali, who is the immediate past president of the Tourism Council of Zambia, added that the government must be seen to protect the Victoria Falls which was the country’s only World Heritage Site (WHS).
“We need to keep the Victoria Falls very natural as required by UNESCO. I know that we don’t have money but we have to be careful in the manner we do things that border on international relations noting that the site is a shared World Heritage [Site] with Zimbabwe,” said Mutali.
And NHCC staff at the Victoria Falls have challenged Chipote to inform the nation how much he knows about the Ferris wheel issue instead of shifting blame to the Ministry of Tourism and Arts.
“In as far as we are concerned, we have a say on allocating land, and our executive director knows a lot. As far as we are concerned, he must have told the minister that it was okay to give the curio traders’ space to the Chinese investor instead of guiding the ministry to otherwise quote UNESCO statutes that govern the WHS,” the workers said anonymously.
The workers added that the government, through the instigations of Chipote must be fighting to have more sites in Zambia registered on UNESCO’s WHS list instead of having the only site the country has being threatened with de-registration.
“Zimbabwe will not let us go this. They have the Mana Pool National Park, the Great Zimbabwe National Monument, Khami Ruins National Monument, the Matopo Hills and the Victoria Falls as WHS, so why not fight to have the Barotes Plains and the Kalambo Falls declared WHS instead of losing the only egg we have in the Victoria Falls. This is poor management and abuse of natural resources at the highest order,”
the NHCC staff said.
Last week, Chipote declined to comment over the planned developments at the falls and referred all queries to the Ministry of Tourism. “That you can confirm with the ministry. I may not be the best person to respond to that. Get in touch with the ministry,” said Chipote.

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Elephant tramples two tourists to death in Livingstone, Zambia

Source: ZNTC
Two foreign tourists have been trampled by an elephant at Maramba River lodge in Livingstone. The incident happened around 17 hours on Saturday.
Senior Wildlife Warden Southern Region Lewis Daka has told ZNBC news that Van Griensven 61 from Holland and Sabine Elfride 57 from Belgium met their fate as they were watching elephants that went within the vicinity of the lodge.
Mr. Daka says the lady allegedly went very close to the elephant to get pictures something that made the elephant agitated and charge at her.
Mr. Daka says Mr. Griensven tried to save the lady and in the process the elephant also charged and trampled on him.
He says his department regrets the death of the two tourists and has appealed to lodge owners to provide guides to tourists who visit their lodges.
Mr. Daka says tourists must not be allowed to get too close to the animals like elephants because they are wild and dangerous.
There is an influx of elephants in Livingstone and Mosi-o-tunya National Park.
Just last week, another elephant trampled on a security officer from one of the lodges in Livingstone on his way to work.

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Zambia sells land near Victoria Falls for Chinese to erect observation ferris wheel

A Chinese investor is set to build a spin wheel at the Victoria Falls after buying off land where the Mukuni curio traders conduct business.

And Victoria Falls Mukuni Curio Traders Association chairperson Fabian Siazibola has confirmed being approached by representatives of the Chinese investor who told them that traders will have to vacate the premises in readiness for the wheel construction.

However, tourism minister Charles Banda says he is not aware that a Chinese investor has been give land at the Victoria Falls but confirmed that some investors had made application for the land in question. Government sources have revealed that part of the Victoria Falls would be run by the Chinese who will put up a play park similar to Disneyland.

The Chinese investor has since been given permission to remove traders from the site to pave way for construction works.

“We have been instructed to give land at the Victoria Falls by the government. The instructions were sent to the Ministry of Tourism from State House. The named Chinese investor (Ju Wenbin) the CEO of China-Africa Cotton Development Limited was even taken on a conducted tour of the Vic Falls accompanied by some directors in the Ministry of Tourism recently,” the source said.

The source added that the Department of Wildlife and Zambia Environmental Management Agency had not been involved in the land allocation which would have required an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) in normal circumstances.

“We informed the government about the dangers of this development with UNESCO, but it seems the PF leadership is in a compromised situation,” the source added.

When reached for a comment, National Heritage Conservation Commission (NHCC) director Collins Chipote said he was not the best person to give an answer on the issue.

“That you can confirm with the ministry, I may not be the best person to respond to that. Get in touch with the ministry,” said Chipote despite him heading an institution that in charge of heritage sites such as the Victoria Falls.

And Siazibola said the traders would never allow the Chinese to put up the wheel with or without government’s permission.

“Over our dead bodies, we will never allow this to happen. The Victoria Falls is our sacred land as a people of Mukuni village; it is a shrine to us…and it is not for sale even to the highest bidder. We have three shrines here and we will protect them with our lives. Let them take the wheel to the Northern Circuit. I will not be surprised that the PF government will sale Zambia to the Chinese tomorrow,”
Siazibola said.

He said the Chinese investor was likely to take over the management of the Victoria Falls just like what happened to ZNBC through Top Star.

“We the people of Mukuni village will never allow the Falls to be sold…we also hear that the PF has placed the Kafue National Park for sale. For God’s sake, the PF should slowdown on this reckless path of selling Zambia. Anyway, we know that just like Michael Sata reversed RB’s deals, the next government will have a big job to deal with the PF corruption,” said Siazibola.

The Victoria Falls is Zambia’s only World Heritage Site shared with Zimbabwe and UNESCO does not allow any developmental projects that impede the beauty of the site.

A Hungarian investor who had planned to put up a hot air balloon near the Zesco power station was stopped by NHCC a couple of years ago despite having commenced the construction program.

And a hotel project near the old Maramba Cultural Village was also stopped soon after then Republican vice-president Lupando Mwape had laid a foundation stone at the site.

When contacted, Banda said he was not aware that land at the Victoria Falls had been given out, adding that State House had no mandate to allocate land but the Ministry of Lands.

He, however, confirmed that there were applications from some investors for the Victoria Falls land. Asked if a Chinese investor has been allocated land at the site, Banda said he would not be in a position to know.

“I am not aware, at the moment I don’t know who has been given land but applications are there. If anybody has been given, the Ministry of Lands will be able to know. Not State House or my ministry, land is only allocated by the Ministry of Lands,” said Banda.

State House spokesperson Amos Chanda was constantly busy when phoned for a comment while the Commissioner of Lands was reportedly out of office and his mobile phone was switched off by press time.

Elephant kills man (Livingstone, Zambia)

An elephant has killed a United Air Charter Zambia Limited security guard in the Mosi-o-Tunya national park in Livingstone.
The man identified as Mulyata Nyumbu aged between fifty and fifty-five was killed by the elephant as he was cycling to work at about 17:00 hours yesterday.
An eye witness, also security guard, told a ZNBC news crew that rushed to the scene that Nyumbu was meters ahead of him cycling when the elephant charged.
Linus Mponda says Nyumbu saw the animal at close range and dropped from the bicycle and ran into the bush but the elephant caught up with him and thereafter Mponda only saw a cloud of dust as the elephant tossed the man in the air several times.
And Department of National Parks and Wildlife Senior Area Warden Lewis Daka who was found at the scene of the attack expressed sadness at the loss of life.
He has however advised companies within the vicinity of the national park to provide suitable transport for their employees to avoid such incidents.
Mr. Daka said walking or cycling in the park especially at this time of the year when the Mosi-o-Tunya national park has a lot of elephants is risky.
But Ronald Mwiinga, a manager at United Air Charter Zambia Limited where Nyumbu used to work said the company provides transport but some employees prefer to cycle to work.
Mr. Mwiinga said the company will with immediate effect ban employees walking or cycling to work through the park to avoid a repeat of the misfortune.
Source: Elephant kills man (Livingstone, Zambia) [03/11/17]

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Zimparks in tribalism and nepotism storm

Mthwakazi Republic Party has said it is concerned and disappointed by the Zimbabwe National Parks and wildlife Authority's conduct in regard to their employment policy.

 Mthwakazi Republic Party said it is reliable informed that just last week the authority's management recruited 120 people for a three month training in Hwange, that will subsequently get them employed.

"The authority's bosses only employ Shona relatives at the expense of the local Ndebele people.  A lot of our people in the whole of Matabeleland had applied for the same jobs with the required results but were not considered or ever called for an interview. At Matopo National parks in Matabeleland South there are more than 800 hundred workers there but non-locals.  Mqondisi Moyo the Party's Member of Parliament's candidate for Matobo North yesterday met the disgruntled Youths who declared that they were ready to defend their jobs and their territories against Shona invasion in Matabeleland and Midlands," said the party.

"As a party we are seriously against this provocation that is being done by the Mugabe regime, we will not allow the government to continue side-lining our people treating us as second class citizens, in our own forefathers land. We have noticed that it has become an unwritten law that the government only employs Shona people for all vacancies from the office orderly to directors it is all according to the 1979 Shona grand plan, that says only Shona people must be employed."

The party said recently another government department Zimra to be precise published vacancy notice asking for drivers to work in Matabeleland North yet the applications are addressed to Harare, which is very clear to them  that their people are just wasting time applying since workers will come from Harare.

"We are all aware that 95% of Zimra workers are Shona speaking and all the doubting Thomases can go and prove that at Mhlahlandlela Zimra offices and Customs Duty offices near  Main Post Office in Bulawayo CBD as well as at the border places like Beitbridge, Plumtree, Victoria Falls and other borders like Maitengwe,Matsiloje, Kazungula and the new one in Thuli in Gwanda," said the party.
"Hardly will you find Sothos, Vendas, Kalangas, Nambyas, Xhosas,Jahundas, Chewas,Tongas and among other tribes in these border posts only shonas including the sweepers.Further investigations into the wild life authority saga reveal that the only people who were employed were related to the bosses and to ZANU PF, which is the major reason why this country has been destroyed. Unqualified people are getting jobs ahead of qualified people simple because they are connected to either the system or Shona tribe."

MRP said they condemn this act of tribalism and nepotism by the ZANU PF satanic government.

"We would like to encourage our people to register and VOTE Team MRP in the next coming election period so that we are able to be in charge of our own resources and our future. A situation where there are no Ndebeles,  Khalanga or Venda people at the National parks and wildlife is a clear sign of provocation and Satanism," said the party.

 "MRP President has declared that if the Matopo National parks will continue doing as they are doing now it will rather be closed down. In Matopo more than 80 people tendered their CVs and 20 were called for interviews, out of 20 only 2 were taken. Only two from Matopo were taken, of those  80 there was only 1 from Slozwi and two from Lushumbe.  Honorable Cde Mqondisi Moyo vowed to fight for the locals from Matobo North and South specifically places like Mahlabathini, Gulathi, Njelele, Mabhulawuni, Chap, White waters, Bhazha, Fumugwe, Mazhayimbe, SunyetSen.,Gohole, Nathisa, Maphisa, Ratanyana, Bhalagwe, Tshelanyemba, Nhlapho, Khezi and other nearby places which constitute Matobo  North and South."

 MRP said this madness by these Shona supremists has gone for so long unchecked and the time is now.

"We are a generation that will not sit back and watch while our tormentors continue to capture us, we don't want to be cursed by the forthcoming generations on our graves, they will spit on our graves if we continue like this," said the party.

Source: Zimparks in tribalism and nepotism storm (30/10/17)

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

'100 tourists robbed in Victoria Falls hotels'

ABOUT 100 tourists have been robbed while booked at hotels in Victoria Falls in the last four months.

Chegutu West legislator Dexter Nduna said this in Parliament on Thursday and called on the Government to strengthen security in resort areas to protect tourists who bring highly sought after foreign currency in the country.

Nduna urged the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Transport and Infrastructure Development to look into issues of security for tourists, especially in Victoria Falls where about 100 robberies have been recorded in the last four months.

"The Committee on Transport and Infrastructure has done quite well resulting in infrastructure development at Victoria Falls Airport which has seen a rise in tourists arrivals in the resort town.

"Be that as it may, what has now occurred in the past four months is that about 100 tourists were robbed while booked in hotels in Victoria Falls. If this is not attended to, it will have a negative effect on the efforts done in infrastructure development," said Nduna.

He said it was important for the relevant authorities to prioritise strengthening of security in Victoria Falls and other resort towns.

"This is why I stand to ask that relevant authorities look at this scourge that is about to reverse the gains that the Committee on Transport and Infrastructure has brought to this country," said Nduna.

Deputy Speaker of Parliament Mabel Chinomona urged Nduna to bring up the issue as a motion.

Tourist arrivals to Victoria Falls increased by 21 percent in the first six months of this year following the expansion of the airport which can now take 1.5 million visitors a year.

Eight airlines now fly into Victoria Falls after Ethiopian Airlines, Kenya Airways and South Africa's Airlink started flying into the resort town, joining British Airways, Air Zimbabwe, South African Airways, Fastjet and Air Namibia.

In its latest report, hospitality group, Africa Albida Tourism said the resort town had recorded a 32 percent increase in international visitors to 84 249 between January and June this year from 63 016 during the comparable period last year.

Source: '100 tourists robbed in Victoria Falls hotels' (23/10/17)

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Zim engages Zambia on one border post

ZIMBABWE is engaging Zambia to establish the One Stop Border Post (OSBP) at Victoria Falls Border, with Bilateral Agreement and procedures manual being finalised.

Industry and Commerce permanent secretary Abigail Shoniwa told the OBSP awareness workshop yesterday that the initiatives were being spearheaded by the Border Efficiency Management Systems (BEMS) technical Committee.
“I am delighted to inform you that the Border Efficiency Management Systems Technical Committee to date, has initiated engagements with Zambia towards the establishment of a OSBP at Victoria Falls Border and the proposed Bilateral Agreement and procedures manual are being finalised,” she said in a speech read on her behalf.
This comes after the just-ended Zimbabwe South Africa Bi-National Commission saw the two heads of States stressing the need to prioritise the implementation of a One Stop Border Post at Beitbridge.
“We have to move with speed to meet the aspirations of our leaders and business at large. It is, therefore, imperative that we continue to work as a team under the BEMS committee banner. The spirit of cooperation is important for the good of our country as a whole,” Shonhiwa added.
African Development Bank and International Organisation of Migration are providing the financial and technical support for the establishment of OSBP.
Other points of entry earmarked for the OSBP are Plumtree, Beitbridge, Forbes and Nyamapanda.
The purpose of OBSP is to reduce the number of stays incurred in cross border travel transactions by combining the activities of both countries border control agencies of single location in each director of travel.
OSBP trade facilitation and transport logistics legal expert, Francis Chirimuuta said the concept of an OSBP reduces the number of stops from the traditional two stops at a border to controls that are undertaken from one single control zone.
“In establishing one stop border stop you obviously need to take into account the critical elements of a one stop border post, firstly you will need a custom-build facility whereby you achieve seamless flow for users and agency officers also then need border management network whereby your ICT and data sharing is established between the agencies of one country and those of another country,” he said.
One of the key payoffs of a one stop border post is that it reduces times spend crossing the border which consequently reduce the cost of trade.
In Chirundu, commercial traffic reduced from time of over 120 hours in 2009 to about 25 hours by 2012 which had a ripple impact in that the cost of crossing the border was reduced.