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.***

‘Disaster’ on the cards as farm invasions continue

‘Disaster’ on the cards as farm invasions continue

http://www.swradioafrica.com

By Alex Bell
10 February 2012

The Commercial Farmers Union (CFU) has again warned of a potential ‘disaster’ 
for the coming cropping season, saying ongoing land seizures are destroying 
the country’s future.

Last week Chief Chiweshe from Mashonaland Central invaded Heyshott Farm in 
Mazowe, owned by John Sole.

Sole, one of the few remaining commercial farmers in the country was 
reportedly evicted by the police on Sunday evening.

In a separate incident army officer Eric Matotova is reported to have 
invaded Ndire Farm and has ignored a High Court order to leave the property.

Meanwhile it has also been reported that about a hundred families have been 
forcibly evicted by the police from two farms in Mazowe West, to pave the 
way for the expansion of a game park and cattle ranch run by Robert Mugabe’s 
wife Grace.

Charles Taffs, the President of the Commercial Farmers Union (CFU), told SW 
Radio Africa that “things are very serious across the country.”

“Without a doubt things are intensifying. With all this talk of elections, 
we are not that surprised, because land is used as a political tool,” Taffs 
said.

He added: “The problem is, while land remains in turmoil like this, there 
will always be invasions. And it’s not just whites being targeted; this is 
everybody and anybody who falls out of political favour, who is not on 
side.”

Taffs explained that as a consequence Zimbabwe is once again facing a 
disaster situation in terms of agricultural production, which has a critical 
affect on the country’s economic state.

“We are a nation of consumers of imported product, and our national deficit 
is 50% of our GDP. We urgently need an investor friendly climate to turn 
things around, but with land still a political tool, that is not going to 
happen,” Taffs said.

Zimbabwe is still said to be facing more than 90% unemployment and for every 
farm invasion, these figures continue to rise. Taffs explained that until 
government puts aside its political bickering and sorts out these issues, 
the country cannot recover.

But he said the government has not engaged with them or anybody else on the 
land issue.

“There has been no effort from government to end this situation. In fact, 
government isn’t even listening. The government is too focused on political 
survival on both sides,” Taffs said.

He however warned that if nothing is done soon, “we are going to be facing a 
regional crisis in terms of food. In Zimbabwe, it’s a disaster and where do 
we turn when there is no more food?”

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