from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE – ZIMBABWE’S war veterans have dismissed reports of another wave of land invasions.
The rebuttal comes amid plans by government to compensate some white farmers dispossessed of land during the land seizures that started in 2000.
Thus has triggered fears that black farmers that occupied the land would be driven out.
Claims that the government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa was giving land back to white former farmers are rife.
However, the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) allayed fears.
“We want to give total assurance to the preparing farmers to proceed with the land preparations to make sure that Zimbabwe is food sufficient and can export,” Chris Mutsvangwa, ZNLWVA chairman, said
“Farmers must proceed unperturbed. Their land is safe. The government is not reversing the land reform programme,” Mutsvangwa assured.
The land reform programme is the hallmark of the administration of then-president, Robert Mugabe.
He sanctioned the seizure of the farms by veterans of the 1970s liberation war and supporters of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic front (ZANU-PF).
The programme is blamed for killing commercial agriculture and sparking food shortages in the Southern African country, formerly a British colony.
However, the government has justified the programme as addressing colonial imbalances in which indigenous black people were driven away from their land by white colonialists.
– CAJ News