Expelled farmers have become tenants on their former farms, say officials – Anadolu Agency
HARARE, Zimbabwe – Zimbabwe’s dispossessed white farmers are trickling back to their land, this time as tenants to Black farmers, officials from the country’s governing and opposition parties claimed Monday.
In an interview with Anadolu Agency, George Makombe, a top official of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) party and liberation war fighter, said reports of Black farmers renting out the land they repossessed from white farmers two decades ago are true.
“Yes, there are resettled farmers in underhand dealings with returning white farmers to whom they are renting out land. But very soon, the government and ZANU-PF will expose them,” Makombe told Anadolu Agency.
Tendai Biti, vice president of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change Alliance, made similar claims to the media recently.
“A cursory study of the land reform process shows the massive existence of leases of acquired land to former white farmers,” said Biti.
“Mashonaland West and the Midlands provinces have the highest number of white lessees. That being the case, the land reform is now a joke.”
Apparently angered by the way resettled farmers are handling the farms they received during the country’s land reform program, Makombe said “we have among our people, even the most educated, those who think being African is a curse.”
“Some think white farmers are the answer to their problems with the paltry percentages they are given for the use of their land,” he added.