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zim price controls

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Time Zone: EST (New York, Toronto)
Messenger: Ten Sent: 8/12/2007 6:20:25 AM

A story from

Zimbabwe: Baby killed in Stampede

HARARE - A four month old baby was tragically killed in a stampede when its mother was involved in a scramble for cheap eggs at Ivirnes Wholesale center on the outskirts of Harare.

Batsirai Makombe who had to be rushed to hospital by a well wisher was pronounced dead on arrival at Chitungwiza General Hospital Tuesday morning.

Chipo Makombe, the mother said that her son fell of the strap on her back and was trampled by several people during the stampede that broke out at the entrance to Irvines.

"I had gone there to buy some eggs to resell. There was a stampede at the gate when the police came and threatened to beat up people who were not following instructions. In fact the police started beating up people.

Things happened so fast I just found myself and the baby on the ground. Running people stepped all over my son and he died on the way to hospital", said a weeping Makombe.

Makombe also revealed that the father of her children passed away last January after a short illness adding that she had been left to fend for their five children who included baby Batsirai

Doctor Webster Moyo the superintendent of Chitungwiza General Hospital confirmed the death of baby Batsirayi saying the nurses at the hospital had pronounced dead on arrival.

"The hospital will soon carry out a postmortem to determine the real cause of his death"; said Moyo.

Irvines is a major producer and supplier of eggs and chicken with a wholesale center that sells its produce to retailers and individuals.

The wholesale is situated along the Highfields-Chitungwiza road south of Harare.

A resident of Zengeza 4 in Chitungwiza Makombe, a recently widowed single mother says she survives on selling eggs bought from Irvines.

She explained that as usual she had gone to the wholesale centre early Tuesday to hoard eggs for sale back home in Chitungwiza.

She observed that since the advent of price controls and the suspension of licences of private abattoirs last month butcheries have run out of meat with most of them closing down.

As a result demand for eggs and chicken meat which is readily available on the black market has risen sharply causing more parallel market merchants descending on the egg and chicken producing wholesale center to hoard the scarce foodstuffs.

The wholesale center has been forced to conscript the services of both the state and military police to maintain law and order at the company on a daily basis.

Thousands of merchants and vendors who visit Irvines Wholesale center everyday to buy eggs and chicken meat have sustained physical injuries when stampedes break out at the entrance of the wholesale as armed police try to control the crowds who often end up forcing their way into the wholesale premises.

Vendors most of them women with children on their backs; forced to earn a living through buying and selling scarce commodities on the black market; have had to contend with the stampedes and police brutality on a daily basis; as they come to the whole sale everyday to buy stocks for resale.

Irvines remains the only producer of eggs and chicken supplying the whole of Harare and Chitungwiza. The company was recently ordered to scale up its production levels or risk being nationalized. The company directors say they have no choice but to operate at a loss.

Smaller producers and farmers are withholding their poultry and eggs in protest to the price controls imposed

Messenger: still looking Sent: 8/12/2007 7:32:11 AM

The cause of this death .....poverty

"poverty is the worst form of violence" gandhi

ten-- so sorry to hear the problems of your country.

Messenger: Ten Sent: 8/12/2007 8:08:06 AM

Give Thanhks for your sympathies Aya, I don't know where things will end. Price controls were yet another horrendous mistake that didn't benfit anyone and to read of tragedy such as death and loss of business is really sad. I don't know if any of this touches the hearts of the policymakers. Better must come and we must fight for that, JAH guide our nation.

Messenger: still looking Sent: 8/12/2007 2:05:07 PM

you know it won't touch their hearts until it happens to a family member -- and even then i wonder.

Messenger: prophecy Sent: 8/12/2007 2:35:52 PM

Hmmm I wander how many rasta singers go to africa to help, can anyone tell I? I talking bout rastafari singers who are making alot of money.

Messenger: Ten Sent: 8/12/2007 2:47:50 PM

Buju makes regular trips - he's been to Zim several times so has Gregory Isaacs. Morgan Heritage has been to SA, Rita Marley's performed in Ghana, so has Julian. I'm not sure if they've done anything to help though.

Messenger: prophecy Sent: 8/12/2007 2:56:57 PM

Give thanx ten

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