Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

***The views expressed in the articles published on this website DO NOT necessarily express the views of the Commercial Farmers' Union.***

Army officials lease land to whites

Army officials lease land to whites

Written by Staff Reporter
Monday, 01 March 2010 07:15
TENGWE – Top army officials who grabbed land during the infamous land reform programme are reported to be leasing their farms to former white commercial farmers after failing to utilise them.

An investigation by this paper indicated that most farms in Tengwe, Mashonaland West, which is regarded as the breadbasket of the country, were being leased after politicians and army officials failed to utilize them.

A farm manager at a local farm told The Zimbabwean last week that white commercial farmers were supplying the inputs, expertise and paying labour. The farm owner will get a 20 per cent of the total profits of the harvests.
Most farms in Tengwe were grabbed by top army officials and politicians.

“These are not army officials who are doing all this excellent work but there are some former white commercial farmers behind the scenes. The white farmers are paying us salaries and supplying all the inputs. The army
official will get 20 per cent of the profits of the harvest,” said one farm manager who refused to be named.

A local white commercial farmer who was evicted from his farm confirmed that he is renting a farming space from an army officer for a fee.

He said he was approached by the officer who revealed that he had failed to utilise the land and fearing that this may tarnish the image of the country and President Robert Mugabe’s land reform programme.

Farm workers interviewed said life had improved slightly compared to when the army official was running the operations.

“At least the white commercial farmer is paying us a decent salary, compared to the army officials. We are also receiving food rations and this motivates us to work,” said one farm worker who preferred anonymity.

However, a survey by this paper revealed that infrastructure such as tobacco barns and irrigation pivots were vandalized during the infamous farm invasions and white commercial farmers were facing challenges in irrigating their crops.


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