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This week’s front page editor

Thomas Rowley

Tom Rowley edits oDR.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

In the run-up to the elections, a young Zimbabwean writes an open letter to the President to offer an alternative vision for the country. Meanwhile Vivian Pevsner has worked as a researcher in Zimbabwe, and Alice Gozo spent five formative years there in the 1990s. In a wide-ranging dialogue, they discuss the country’s past and future, starting with the tremendous optimism which prevailed 10 years after independence. Yasmina Zaidman also deals in past and future: she writes in memory of Zepheniah Phiri Maseko whose conservation techniques might offer a hopeful path out of the bitter and divisive battles over land.

Seeking asylum, ending destitution

If "destitutes" across the UK can stand up and act together we can make a difference: we are ready to meet the authorities at the negotiating table, says Nancy Bonongwe.

Chinese companies under scrutiny in Zimbabwe

Ten years into the Look East policy, Zimbabwe is showing itself to be a not-so-satisfied customer of Chinese investment.

Zimbabwe: wrong way, right way

The desperate people of Zimbabwe deserve better than a political fix that will keep Robert Mugabe in power, says John Makumbe of the University of Zimbabwe.

Zimbabwe’s war of disappearance

The tactic of enforced disappearance represents a dangerous extension of human-rights abuse by Robert Mugabe's regime, says Sophie Roberts.

Zimbabwe: the death of “quiet diplomacy”

The resignation of Thabo Mbeki as South Africa’s president is linked to the failure of Zimbabwe’s power-sharing agreement. The result is to restore the political initiative to Robert Mugabe's regime, says Roger Southal.

(This article was first published on 20 October 2008)

The right and wrong fix: Afghan lessons for Zimbabwe

Robert Mugabe’s coronation is the time to start preparing in detail for the aftermath of his regime, say Ashraf Ghani and Clare Lockhart.

Zimbabwe: a tale of two leaders

The withdrawal of Zimbabwe's main opposition leader from the election leaves its president certain of victory. But will Africa's leaders turn against Robert Mugabe at last? Jabu Shoko, in Harare, reports.

Zimbabwe’s election: an African appeal

African civil-society leaders, uniting to call for a free election process and an end to violence in Zimbabwe, invite members of the global public to support an open letter

Zimbabwe: the day democracy died

The decision of the Movement for Democratic Change opposition not to contest the decisive second round of the presidential election puts intense pressure on Zimbabwe's southern African neighbours, says "Hope" of the civic-activism group Sokwanele.

Zimbabwe's unfolding drama

Zimbabweans remain poised between fear and hope as Robert Mugabe's regime enforces a new test of their determination to end his rule, says Wilf Mbanga

Zimbabwe votes - and waits

People are losing their fear and voting for change even in Robert Mugabe's political strongholds, reports The Zimbabwean.

Happy birthday, Robert Mugabe

Zimbabwe's president is 83 years old today. Wilf Mbanga, former friend turned exiled editor of "The Zimbabwean", writes to him.

(This article was first published on 21 February 2007)

The Commonwealth: punching below weight

The Commonwealth's evasion of the plight of Zimbabwe at its Kampala meeting reflects a failure to live up to its own principles, says Michael Holman.

Farewell, Robert Mugabe

Zimbabwe’s ruler is a symbol of western as well as African wrongs, says Stephen Chan.

Dizzy worms in Zimbabwe

Robert Mugabe’s despotic rule has brought Zimbabwe to its knees. An emergency recovery programme, coordinated by the Commonwealth and made accessible to Zimbabweans at home and abroad, could become a catalyst for change, writes Michael Holman.

Zimbabwean travails

The people of Robert Mugabe's fiefdom are staggering under a weight of poverty, repression and social collapse. But they keep hope alive, reports Conor O'Loughlin.

Zimbabwe between past and future

Zimbabwe's ruthless leader Robert Mugabe is sowing the seeds of his regime's demise, says Andrew Meldrum.

'The Zimbabwean' in danger

Robert Mugabe's media bullies are trying to stifle free expression about the failings of his regime.

Fear and loathing in Zimbabwe

Robert Mugabe's cronies are worried and his party deep in debt. "The Zimbabwean" reports on a regime rotting from within.

Zimbabwe's unending crisis

Chinese friends, emigrating faith-healers, and baton-wielding police are all part of Zimbabwe's slow collapse, reports "The Zimbabwean".

Zimbabwe reforms bite government where it hurts

The Zimbabwean reports that while the government extends its disastrous economic reforms, its own power base in the security forces is weakening through discontent and hardship.

Zimbabwe needs tolerance and diversity

The senate election and the opposition MDC split are further evidence of Zimbabwe’s meltdown. The HIV/Aids calamity is just one of its symptoms.

A glimmer of change in Zimbabwe

A low turnout, an easy ruling-party win - but Zimbabwe's senate elections could yet prove a turning-point in Zimbabwean politics, says Andrew Meldrum.

Two nights in Harare's police cells

Fifty hours’ detention in Harare Central Police Station gave civil-rights activist Netsai Mushonga an unmatched insight into the decay of Robert Mugabe’s regime

Zimbabwe's election blues

The continued official decay and spirited public resistance of Zimbabwe, highlighted in three reports.

Zimbabwe's opposition: a house divided

Robert Mugabe’s regime is as oppressive as ever, but the opposition Movement for Democratic Changes is busy fighting itself. Wilf Mbanga, editor of “The Zimbabwean”, hears MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s version.

Thabo Mbeki in Zimbabwe

Two reports from this week’s issue of The Zimbabwean show deep South African involvement in the politics of Zimbabwe – from keeping its neighbour’s military afloat to meddling in Harare’s opposition wrangles

The end of Mugabe?

Wilf Mbanga, editor of “The Zimbabwean”, reveals members of the ruling Zanu-PF and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change have held secret meetings in London and Washington to discuss plans for a new Zimbabwe after Robert Mugabe.

Zimbabwe's empty gestures, empty stomachs

Two reports from “The Zimbabwean” reveal the endemic crisis of a state offering food to the wealthiest country on the planet while inflicting violence and starvation on its own people.

Zimbabwe inside and out

openDemocracy continues its collaboration with The Zimbabwean, publishing two stories from this week’s edition that shed light on life for Zimbabweans, both inside and outside of Robert Mugabe’s ailing nation.

Zimbabwe's calvary

Zimbabweans are facing new dangers at home and no respite when they flee.

Zimbabwe's paper dreams

Robert Mugabe’s government is locking the country’s exit doors, shutting its citizens’ minds – and creating a nation of mathematical geniuses. Three reports from “The Zimbabwean” on life under Zanu-PF.

Zimbabwean stories

In openDemocracy’s continuing collaboration with “The Zimbabwean” newspaper, we republish four short articles which chart the humanitarian consequences of Robert Mugabe’s repressive policies.

A tale of great loss

Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwe is crushing the lives and hopes of its citizens. In the first in a series of collaborations with “The Zimbabwean” newspaper, openDemocracy republishes Jeremiah Kure’s account of a disillusion so profound he is preparing to quit the land he loves.

Mass evictions in Zimbabwe

The destruction of townships in Robert Mugabe’s Operation Murambatsvina (“drive out the rubbish”) campaign is both naked assertion of power and challenge to Zimbabwe’s political opposition, says human-rights campaigner Bev Clark.
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