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Panorama
Five days in May
Robert Mugabe
President Robert Mugabe
Panorama: Five days in May was broadcast at 2215 BST on Sunday, 15 June, 2003 on BBC One.

Zimbabwe is in crisis. The country is on the brink of collapse. There's no food, no fuel and now, no cash to buy anything with either. Inflation is one of the highest in the world and industry has ground to a halt.

Dissent is ruthlessly suppressed. Torture, beatings, and arbitrary arrest have become commonplace. The rule of law has been undermined. The elected opposition is under siege.

But for five days in May the Zimbabwe national cricket team were scheduled to appear at Lords as the standard-bearers of this regime.

Reporter, Fergal Keane has interviewed two of Zimbabwe's Test cricketers, Henry Olonga and Andy Flower, who were eliminated from the national side and are now in exile because of their public protests about the state of their country.

And Panorama also sent undercover teams into Zimbabwe to record the lives of a handful of people who have dared to be filmed protesting the state of their nation over five days in May. For most of them arrest, beatings and torture are just part of the grim reality of their everyday lives. Two of them have since been detained again.

Life in Zimbabwe today is a far cry from the "nation of gentlemen" Robert Mugabe said he wanted to create as President of the former British colony and Patron of the national cricket team.

As the rest of the world condemns Robert Mugabe for quashing peaceful protest, Fergal Keane asks if the final push to remove the regime can now only come from the street. And if so, can the beleaguered people do anything against a ruthless government well practised in the art of tyranny?

Production team:
Reporter: Fergal Keane
Producer: Thea Guest
Assistant Producers: Richard Danbury, Claire McFall, Fran Baker
Deputy Editors: Andy Bell, Sam Collyns
Editor: Mike Robinson

Panorama: Five days in May

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