Analysis and reporting on key policy issues from Southern and Central Africa

v21/22 3 November 06

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CONTENTS

Congo:

Both sides claim victory in presidential election 

Congo:

Nkunda unmoved by Bush's banning order

Congo:

International Criminal Court cases under scrutiny 

Region:

Uganda's anti-Khartoum operation may rebound on Congo security 

Region:

Ominous warnings about rise of Burundi ruling party's 'parallel power'   

Region:

'No SANDF vehicles missing' in Burundi

Zambia:

Government cautious on oil discovery

Zimbabwe:

Government formally backs down on mining takeover 

Zimbabwe:

Cemeteries 'almost full'

Swaziland:

As sugar and cotton fade 'dagga' cash crop may increase 

Region:

Fresh bid to breathe life into SADC integration project

SA economy:

Mega arms deal with Turkey may fall through  


Congo:

Both sides claim victory in presidential election

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] Five days after the second round of the presidential election and the provincial elections, both sides were claiming victory, albeit discreetly. As SouthScan went to press first indications showed that the political divide between the East and the West was confirmed, but also that the results may be close.

Neither side has dared so far to announce publicly the results in the DR Congo itself.  ...

No announcement pledge

On Friday (November 1) the Kinshasa paper 'Alerte Plus' was suspended for 30 days for headlining a victory for Bemba. On the same day, the campaign leaders of Kabila's 'Alliance for the Presidential Majority' and Bemba's 'Union for the Nation' coalitions pledged they would not publish any results, even those from the polling stations. Both sides are allowed to check the results compiled by the IEC and compare them with those reported by their own witnesses but were not allowed to make them public. ...

Low national turn-out

Unofficial results leaked from the IEC on 5 percent of the electorate show that the turn-out was rather low (65 percent at national level). Heavy rains in Kinshasa, in Bas-Congo and in Bandundu may explain the lower than expected participation of 60 percent. . ...

Optimistic observers

Among the 1,100 international observers, few are as optimistic as the members of the Association of Western European Parliamentarians for Africa (AWEPA), who said that they did not see any fraud. ...

Bemba side protests

But the co-ordinator of the pro-Bemba's "Union for the Nation" coalition, Francois Mwamba protested on 31 October against what he called "massive fraud attempts" alleging that in a clear breach of the electoral law supporters of the other side had bribed many voters throughout the country. ...>>> Full report


Congo:

Nkunda unmoved by Bush's banning order

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] The key name on the US list putting sanctions on certain DR Congo political leaders was that of Gen. Laurent Nkunda. He has an international arrest warrant out for him issued by the Kinshasa government but UN forces refuse to arrest him and the government in Kinshasa is unwilling to order in its rag-tag national army. ...

Collecting taxes

Nkunda, meanwhile, continues to collect taxes at roadblocks and to control the area round Masisi in the eastern Congo. His soldiers - he claims he commands 10,000 men - are on the government payroll, though wages do not come and they take orders from him.  Local officials say Nkunda pulls in more than US$1 million a year from local taxes. ...

>>> Full report


Congo:

International Criminal Court cases under scrutiny

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] The International Criminal Court is about to open its first case, against former Congolese warlord Thomas Lubango for his use of child soldiers, but its warrants for two leaders of the Ugandan Lord's Resistance Army have provoked debate on the efficacy of its intervention. ...

>>> Full report


Region:

Uganda's anti-Khartoum operation may rebound on Congo security

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] Uganda is believed to be training 300 rebels of the secessionist Darfur Sudan Liberation Army. They have been fighting in Darfur, according to Ugandan military and Arab diplomatic sources.

This is the latest twist in the relations between Khartoum and the Kampala government and has led to retaliatory measures by Khartoum through resumed logistical and military intelligence support for Uganda's rebel Lord's Resistance Army, LRA. ...

Training course

The training of the Darfur rebels is currently taking place at Gadaffi garrison, Jinja, in eastern Uganda and has been going on since July. The rebels, who are disguised as SPLA (Southern Sudan People's Liberation Army) soldiers, are undertaking a six-month training course in combat and infantry readiness. ...

>>> Full report


Region:

Ominous warnings about rise of Burundi ruling party's 'parallel power'

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] Burundi's multiparty democracy, developed under the aegis of a South African-led UN peace force and celebrated not long ago as a "success story", is coming under increasing criticism.

Two dissident figures from the ruling 'National Council for the Defence of Democracy - Forces for the Defence of Democracy', better known under their French acronym CNDD-FDD, have lambasted what they called the dangerous "parallel power" which has been developed by party chairman Hussein Radjabu....

Sudan linked company

Greatlinks is allegedly a vehicle for Radjabu's Sudanese associates who are seeking to extend their influence in Burundi....

>>> Full report


Region:

'No SANDF vehicles missing' in Burundi

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] South Africa's Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota has vigorously denied reports that the SA defence force had lost R27 million worth of vehicles, guns and ammunition during peacekeeping operations in Burundi....

>>> Full report


Zambia:

Government cautious on oil discovery

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] President Levy Mwanawasa has further cemented his presidential election win last month by an announcement of oil and gas discoveries on the north west border with Angola.

But this week Mines and Mineral Development Minister Kalombo Mwansa was more cautious, saying there was a need to do further studies to determine the size and quality of the reserves. ...

>>> Full report


Zimbabwe:

Government formally backs down on mining takeover

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] The Zimbabwean government is to give foreign mining companies credits for "any investment into social investments such as schools, scholarships, training and on-going running costs of clinics". This will enable them to avoid handing over a majority shareholding to the government.

Plans were announced in March for a law to compel foreign firms to hand over 51 percent of their equity to local investors, sparking warnings from the mining sector that this would frighten away investment. ...

Move against union leadership ...

>>> Full report


Zimbabwe:

Cemeteries 'almost full'

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] Cemeteries in Harare are almost full and it is getting increasingly difficult to find space to bury people, according to the annual report by the Department of Housing and Community Services. ...

Police on UN mission

Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri on Wednesday sent off 31 officers to a UN peacekeeping mission in East Timor....

>>> Full report


Swaziland:

As sugar and cotton fade 'dagga' cash crop may increase

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] Swaziland may seek to boost the one area of its agricultural cash economy that remains viable - its marijuana crop.

The government is set to explore the production of hemp for legal uses, but if it becomes the large-scale cash crop planned there is little doubt that opportunities for illegal drug exports in an already porous system would increase...

Herbal alternatives

Swaziland is left with few alternatives than to develop a crop that it hopes could be used to manufacture fuels, textiles, skin oils and lotions. ...

Major producers

Swaziland was listed in 2005 as one of the major cannabis producers in Southern and Eastern Africa. Interpol statistics . ...

>>> Full report


Region:

Fresh bid to breathe life into SADC integration project

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] South Africa is trying to breathe new life into the bogged down process of economic integration in SADC, the Southern African Development Community. In his weekly web letter SA's President Thabo Mbeki warned against "false starts" and has called for "a proper basis for duty free trade within the SADC region".

Signs are that countries with overlapping bloc membership will soon be called on to make their decisions for one side or another, mostly between the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and SADC....

International pressures

A tipping point for effective African regionalization, and particularly SADC integration, is rapidly being reached in international and regional relations.. ..

Security council seat

At the same time the EU is watching warily as China moves in on the rich resources and potential markets of the region. As in the old Cold War days African countries are finding their negotiating leverage is being magnified by the entrance of a new competitor. ...

EFTA deal with SACU

Meanwhile a free trade agreement concluded last year between the European free trade area (EFTA) and the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) has been tabled in parliament. . ...

>>> Full report


SA economy:

Mega arms deal with Turkey may fall through

[© SouthScan v21/22 3 Nov 06] South Africa is meeting sharp competition from the US and other major arms manufacturers in its bid to sell attack helicopters to Turkey, a deal that has involved marketing support from top SA government figures. ...

Short-listed ...

State subsidies ...

>>> Full report