While the government warns of a white invasion, exactly the opposite is taking place
Zimbabwe's few remaining white farmers are either barricaded in their homes, waiting in a state of fear, or running for safety today. In scenes reminiscent of eight years ago, chanting gangs of so-called war veterans, encouraged by Zanu-PF propaganda, are threatening both their property and their lives.
The new wave of invasions began on Saturday, in Masvingo province, 160 kilometres south of Harare, when five farms came under attack, and a game lodge was occupied. It started shortly after Mugabe himself issued a warning that land must not be allowed to "slip back into the hands of whites."
Today it is thought that at least 20 farms have come under attack, leaving less than 200 in white hands. This compares to a total of 4,000 when the original attacks began at the turn of the century.
Meanwhile, as the country waits for a High Court ruling on the publication of the presidential election results, expected some time today, police have arrested polling officials from three different areas. They are accused of falsifying voting totals, to the detriment of Zanu-PF. The MDC have dismissed the allegations as yet another means of buying time.
MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai, currently in South Africa, maintains that his victory in the parliamentary elections was clear and fair - and as a result, he has been making plans for the restoration of stability in the country when the MDC take over. And these plans do indeed include some white faces.
My sources tell me that the first priority of the new MDC government will be sort out the financial chaos that exists within the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, responsible for printing money and inducing the hyper-inflation that is wrecking the economy.
First, he will fire the present governor, Gideon Gono, and replace him temporarily with one of his deputies. Then, under an arrangement already in place with the German government, two German financial experts will fly in, as advisers to the new governor. They will be expected to stay for a period of six months.
Other MDC plans include changes in the leadership of the security forces, with new commanders for both the army and the air force, a new director-general of the CIO (the secret police) and a new commissioner-general of police. All these appointments will be on an "acting" basis only.
The current Chief Justice, George Chigausiku, will also be removed. But not immediately. He will have one last important duty to perform - to swear in Morgan Tsvangirai as the new President of Zimbabwe.
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