Stand-off Continues Between Masvingo Farm Invaders and Zimbabwe Police
28 September 2011
A shortage of sugar looms because some invaded farms are sugar-cane
plantations in the national sugar-producing region of Chiredzi
Some 5,000 families in Zimbabwe's southeast province of Masvingo have
invaded farms and wildlife conservancies, among them thousands of members of
an apostolic sect, and refused to budge despite pressure from police and the
national Land Inspectorate.
A recent visit to Chiredzi by Land Inspectorate officials, led by Deputy
Commissioner of Police Godwin Matanga, failed to convince the invaders to
move off the properties – most of which are sugar cane plantations in the
tropical lowveld part of Zimbabwe.
Chiredzi West lawmaker Moses Mare told VOA reporter Chris Gande the farm
invasions have reduced national sugar production by more than 70 percent.
Edward Mkhosi, a member of the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee
set up to track compliance by Zimbabwe political parties with the 2008
Global Political Agreement for power sharing, said JOMIC has urged an
immediate end to such invasions.
There were 4,000 mainly white-owned commercial farms in Zimbabwe when
President Robert Mugabe launched a disorderly and often violent land reform
program that most observers say devastated the country's agricultural
sector. Today there are a few hundred white-owned commercial farms, many of
them still under pressure from invaders.