At a mass rally in Lupane, in the troubled province of Matabeleland, Zimbabwe Prime Minister Robert Mugabe on May 14 called for enforced work to fulfil the government's economic development plans.
GV People queueing and being searched by police before going into the rally (2 shots)
GV Helicopter overflying rally
SV AND GVs Girls with various posters praising Mugabe (2 shots)
GV PAN Crowd at the rally
GV PAN Mugabe arriving greeted by local councillors (2 shots)
SV PAN Woman waving and saluting
GV AND SV Mugabe speaking, crowd listening (6 shots)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: At a mass rally in Lupane, in the troubled province of Matabeleland, Zimbabwe Prime Minister Robert Mugabe on May 14 called for enforced work to fulfil the government's economic development plans. The rally site was heavily guarded by police and people were searched before being allowed in. Mr. Mugabe, addressing the estimated 25,000 crowd, said the government's aim was to consolidate the country's hard-won independence by strengthening the economy. He asked for united work by all Zimbabweans to achieve this goal. Mr. Mugabe's statement came shortly after the disclosure of the latest Zimbabwean economic figures by the International Monetary Fund. According to these figures, Zimbabwe's economy is expected to decline by three per cent this year; a sharp contrast to the substantial growth in gross national product in recent years. This reversal has been blamed on the world recession and the start of a severe drought. The government it seems must now take rather unpopular measures to face the crisis; such as increasing taxes and making major reductions in public spending.