Mugabe's Party Feasts While Zimbabwe Starves
Over 200 farm animals to be consumed during four-day Zanu-PF conference
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 19, 2008 12:30 PM CST
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe arrives at the National Heroes Acre in Harare, Thursday, Dec. 11, 2008, where he spoke at the burial of Eliot Manyika, a government minister who died in a car accident.   (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
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(Newser) – The government of Zimbabwe has planned a decadent feast for delegates from the ruling party while starvation and cholera run rampant in the general population, Time reports. Robert Mugabe and 5,000 Zanu-PF delegates will treat themselves to 124 cattle, 81 goats, and 18 pigs across a four-day conference now under way. "This truly is incredible in a country where millions of impoverished souls are starving," said an editor of thezimbabwetimes.com.

Besides inflation and financial mismanagement that has forced Zimbabweans to resort to a barter system, a cholera epidemic—which Mugabe has denied the existence of—has claimed 1,111 lives so far. And though Zanu-PF will eat well at its annual conference, new UN estimates say that nearly half of Zimbabwe’s population will need food aid in the next quarter.