Stop Violence, UN Rights Chief Tells Mugabe

Pillay, whose five day visit to the country ends Friday, met with Mugabe in a closed door meeting at State House for about an hour and a half.
 
“It was a very important meeting with President Mugabe,” said Pillay.  “He recounted to me the past history of Zimbabwe and attributed some of the current problems to the past. I also urged him to ensure that the future elections will be free and fair and free from violence.”
 
“I commended the president for making a call that there should be no violence in the future elections and urged him to continue to make such calls.”
 
Pillay could not answer more questions from journalists saying she “going to issue a press statement on Friday.”
 
Earlier she toured Boka tobacco auction floors and is expected to visit Panashe estate farm in Mazowe. She was concerned about the poor conditions farmers were subjected to while awaiting their opportunity to sell their produce.

She said she was impressed that rural folk that had over the years toiled in other people’s farms had found their own means of livelihood.

“I see that as empowering poor farmers…it’s giving them dignity hope,”

Asked by the UN rights envoy if the allocation of farming land was partisan, tobacco Industry and Marketing Board chairperson, Monica Chinamasa said: “The programme is open to all Zimbabweans who are interested. All we had to do was to apply.”