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.***

Zimbabwe’s stolen farms stolen again

Zimbabwe’s stolen farms stolen again

Published on : 17 January 2011 – 12:09pm |

“We were forced to leave our communal areas where we could sustain ourselves
and were dumped on large pieces of land which we cannot afford to utilise.
Now the government is threatening to take back the same land,” fumes Kundai,
a beneficiary of Zimbabwe’s land redistribution programme.

By Nkosana Dlamini, Harare

Kundai is one of Zimbabwe’s black farmers given land seized from whites by
the government. They now run the risk of losing it back to the government
again because they’re failing to make productive use of it. Like many
others, Kundai struggles every day to till hectares of land using an
ox-drawn plough.

Until now the threat of re-redistribution has been just that – a threat. But
recently it was revealed that Agriculture Minister  Herbert Murerwa had
given a farm back to a white farmer after it’s new black beneficiary had
failed to utilise it.

“I want to warn all those who are not taking us seriously that we will
repossess their farms if they do not do anything on them, expecting
everything from the government,” Murerwa told a local online newspaper.

The white farmer cannot be named for fear of victimisation by liberation war
veterans, a militant section of President Robert Mugabe’s support base who
spearheaded Mugabe’s violent land grab at the turn of the century.

Farm machinery
The majority of poor land beneficiaries say the government has failed to
fulfill its promises to supply them with the machinery needed to till large
tracts of farmland.

“They will never improve if there is no capital injection or resources,”
said Kindness Paradza, a former legislator from Mugabe’s party, who is also
a farmer.

Large quantities of farm machinery sourced in 2008 through Zimbabwe’s
Reserve Bank were distributed mainly to Mugabe’s top allies within the
government, the judiciary and the military. They were given tractors,
harvesters and diesel power generators while the ordinary farmers without
powerful connections got ox driven carts and hoes.

Seeds, diesel, fertilisers and other chemicals  were also given freely to
some black farmers in an effort to boost agricultural produce. The problem
is that the top officials who benefited never took farming seriously. They
would resell the chemicals and diesel on the black market for a quick buck.

Zimbabwean banks have also refused to give loans to poor black farmers, most
of whom lack the expertise and capital to work the land on a commercial

Secret lease deals
Now, the government wants the black farmers who did receive support to
plough back their profits into farming.

Following threats by the government, some land beneficiaries have entered
into secret lease deals with the former land owners. But this has sparked
fury within Mugabe’s regime, which is at pains to convince the world the
land re-distribution programme has been successful. The “fast-track” land
seizure campaign that began in 2000 was marred by violence, murder, theft
and arson.

Out of more than 6000 white farmers in Zimbabwe in 2000, less than 400 still
occupy their land. Zimbabwe’s economy is said to have shrunk by 50 percent
following the destruction of agriculture, the mainstay of the Zimbabwean


Fresh Chingwizi headache for govt

Fresh Chingwizi headache for govt    12/7/2019 Source: Fresh Chingwizi headache for govt | Newsday (News) BY TATENDA CHITAGU Survivors of the Tugwi-Mukosi floods in 2014

Read More »

ED dangles carrot to war veterans

ED dangles carrot to war veterans – NewsDay Zimbabwe   2/7/2019 By Everson Mushava PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government has ordered all the country’s eight provincial

Read More »

New Posts: