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.***

White farmers return to Zimbabwe land

White farmers return to Zimbabwe land

At least 120 white farmers in Zimbabwe have returned to the land by setting
up farms under leasehold deals with the black beneficiaries of Robert
Mugabe’s land seizure policies.
By Peta Thornycroft in Harare 11:01PM GMT 03 Dec 2010

The emergence of a new group of white farmers has drawn bitter criticism
from the victims of Mr Mugabe’s violent occupation of properties sold under
colonial era leases.

“These farmers handed Mr Mugabe victory,” said former Zimbabwe Tobacco
Association president, Andy Ferreira.

In the ten years since Mr Mugabe ordered 4,000 white farmers off their land,
Zimbabwe’s economy has collapsed. A recent revival in agricultural
production appears to have resulted from younger white farmers restoring
fallow land to agriculture.

Mr Ferreira has called on international traders to shun tobacco grown on
contested land as “blood tobacco”.

Mr Ferreira, an evicted farmer, said this new generation of white farmers
did deals – often with Mr Mugabes cronies in the ruling Zanu PF party
“because they like the life” and rewards of farming in one of Africa’s most
fertile nations.

Hendrik Olivier, director of the Commercial Farmers’ Union said, in some
discomfort: “Yes it is happening. We advised these (white) farmers not to
move onto land without permission from original owners” Some farmers are
paying leases to the Zanu PF beneficiary and the original owner. Others are
only paying the Zanu PF person who “acquired” the land and its improvements
for free.”

Trevor Gifford, a past president of the CFU, who was forced off his farm in
eastern Zimbabwe earlier this year said: :”I am relieved this is coming out.
Some of these white farmers are behaving disgracefully.”


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