27 November 2012

Zimbabwe: NGO Linked to Zanu-PF Tries to Blacklist Global Watchdog

A non-governmental organisation known to be aligned to ZANU PF has made moves to try and block entry into the country by two officials from Partnership Africa Canada (PAC), a global watchdog that recently exposed massive looting from the Marange diamond fields.

According to the independent Daily News newspaper, Resource Exploitation Watch (REW), which is supposed to monitor mining activities, petitioned the chief immigration officer to deny entry to two directors of PAC.

The Canadian group released a damning report on Zimbabwe's diamond mining industry earlier this month, which revealed that at least $2 billion worth of diamond revenue had been looted from Marange.

The Daily News said REW wrote to the chief immigration officer, urging him to declare PAC directors Bernard Taylor and Allan Martin persona non grata. The report said the two "frequently visit Zimbabwe" to carry out research.

Tafadzwa Musarara, REW's chairperson, is quoted as saying: "The two have been coming to Zimbabwe frequently to conduct their researches and their conduct is injurious to the national economic interest of Zimbabwe."

The report, titled "Reap what you sow, greed and corruption in Zimbabwe: Marange diamonds fields", was published on the first day of the Diamond Conference organised by the Mining ministry in Victoria Falls earlier this month. Musarara said this was "well calculated to rubbish the diamond conference".

Musarara also accused Taylor and Martin of being funded by the US State Department and Canadian Foreign Ministry, saying they are bent on perpetuating "the hostile foreign policies of their funders".

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