Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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ZANU PF officials implicated in wildlife bribes scam

ZANU PF officials implicated in wildlife bribes scam

By Tererai Karimakwenda
11 September, 2012

A group of ZANU PF officials who were recently given land and granted 
hunting licenses in the Save Valley Conservancy have been accused of trying 
to sell the licences back to the white owners, whose licenses were 

The allegations came from the Conservancy’s Vice Chairman, Wilfried Pabst, 
who reportedly said all 25 beneficiaries have been approaching his 
“colleagues and business partners”, demanding bribes that ranged from 
$10,000 to $100,000 in exchange for their permits.

According to the Daily News newspaper, Pabst said the Conservancy turned the 
bribes down because they “could not entertain such mafia style operations”. 
He described the bribes as “blackmail” which had nothing to do with 

The ZANU PF officials were granted concessions by the National Parks and 
Wildlife under the guise of indigenization in July, ignoring warnings about 
the destruction their actions would bring to the valuable wildlife in the 
Save Conservancy.

There is also concern that the Conservancy-based land grabs could jeopardise 
Zimbabwe’s foreign investment opportunities, ahead of the UN World Tourism 
Organization General Assembly, due in Victoria Falls next year.

The list of beneficiaries of the hunting licences and land grab include the 
Minister of Higher Education Stan Mudenge, Masvingo governor Titus Maluleke 
and war vet and former legislator Shuvai Mahofa. A more detailed list 
published last week included top military officials and ZANU PF legislators, 
as well as war vet leader Joseph Chinotimba.

They are said to be part of a land grab campaign known as the “Masvingo 
Initiative”, who plan to takeover conservancies and hunting concessions 
using ZANU PF’s so-called land reform and empowerment policies.

Johnny Rodrigues from the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force confirmed said 
that greed has taken over and there is a lot of corruption taking place in 
the conservancies. “The only people that are benefiting are one-sided party 
faithful and these guys are really milking the country,” Rodrigues 

He told SW Radio Africa they have been saying for years that ZANU PF would 
target the conservancies once they destroyed the ranches, and this is now 
happening. It is feared the National Parks, where wildlife is protected, may 
be next.

Regarding the beneficiaries, Rodrigues said: “They are not actually 
conservationists. All they are interested in is fattening their wallets. The 
rural people should be part of the stakeholders so that they become your 
anti-poaching corridor. But at the moment they do not benefit at all.”

War vet Shuvai Mahofa, one of those granted a hunting licence, is reported 
to have openly admitted she is only concerned with making money. According 
to the Daily News, she dismissed allegations that they were destroying the 
conservancies as “rubbish” and added “I do not care what they say because I 
am now in business and making money. We have freed Zimbabwe from these 
Germans and Italians.”

Asked to answer allegations that she lacked wildlife management and hunting 
skills, Mahofa said: “We cannot let the whites enjoy riches in our country. 
We also want blacks in this sector. It is unacceptable that these few whites 
are allowed to harvest the money there. In fact I am realising that farming 
is a waste of time, there is a lot of money to be made in hunting.

She added: “Business is very good and there is free money to be made out 


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