August 12, 2005: Headlines: Figures: COS - Thailand: Diplomacy: Hunger: COS - Zimbabwe: Financial Gazette: Government of Zimbabwe edgy over Tony Hall's visit

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Thailand: Special Report: RPCV Tony Hall: Tony Hall: Archived Stories: August 12, 2005: Headlines: Figures: COS - Thailand: Diplomacy: Hunger: COS - Zimbabwe: Financial Gazette: Government of Zimbabwe edgy over Tony Hall's visit

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Government of Zimbabwe edgy over Tony Hall's visit

Government of Zimbabwe edgy over Tony Hall's visit

THE government, stung by a scathing United Nations (UN) report released late last month, was this week edgy over the unexpected visit of the United States envoy to the world body as it battles to meet self-imposed targets for providing housing to victims of the clean-up exercise. Former Congressman Tony Hall of Ohio, now ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture, served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Thailand in the 1960's.

Government of Zimbabwe edgy over Tony Hall's visit

Government edgy over US envoy's visit

Njabulo Ncube

8/12/2005 8:01:10 AM (GMT +2)

THE government, stung by a scathing United Nations (UN) report released late last month, was this week edgy over the unexpected visit of the United States envoy to the world body as it battles to meet self-imposed targets for providing housing to victims of the clean-up exercise.

Tony Hall, the US ambassador to the UN Agencies for Food and Agriculture, arrived yesterday to assess the humanitarian crisis sparked by the two-month long blitz on shantytowns that shattered the livelihoods of an estimated 700 000 people.

Government officials overseeing the reconstruction of structures for the victims of the clean-up campaign are panicking amid indications that the much-trumpeted Operation Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle will not meet its target despite official claims to the contrary.

Ignatius Chombo, the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National, is on record as saying the government would be able to build houses for the majority of the affected people by the end of August this.

Yesterday he was not immediately available to comment on reports that only a handful of houses had been constructed in Harare and Bulawayo, the two most affected cities.

Timothy Smith, the director of the US public affairs section in Harare, was reluctant to discuss the alleged diplomatic rifts posed by the ambassadors' visit, but said Hall's first port of call would be the capital city and its environs, adding the visit "will go a long way in aiding the UN and the US to solve the country's humanitarian and food security crisis."

Government reports at the weekend indicated Harare had not been informed of ambassador Hall's visit. Last month an envoy dispatched by the African Union to assess Operation Murambatsvina was forced to leave without executing his mission after the government refused to sanction it allegedly because proper procedures had not been followed.

Bahare Tom Nyandunga, a member of the African Commission on Humanand People's Rights and Special Rapporteur responsible for Refugees and Asylum Seekers, spent nearly a week cooling his feet at a local hotel in Harare waiting for accreditation.

He however, was forced to hastily leave the country after Harare had expressed displeasure at his presence to his bosses in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.





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Story Source: Financial Gazette

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; Figures; COS - Thailand; Diplomacy; Hunger; COS - Zimbabwe

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