Tokwe-Mukosi flood victims defy Chombo

via Tokwe-Mukosi flood victims defy Chombo 13/04/2014 NewZimbabwe

MORE than 3,000 victims of the February Tokwe-Mukosi flood disaster have vowed to remain in the Chingwizi holding camp where they were temporarily accommodated after the disaster if government does not give them a $9 million total in terms of compensation.

Angry villagers told a visiting ministerial committee led by local government minister, Ignatius Chombo that if nothing comes by in terms of the demanded government compensation, they will prolong their stay in their overcrowded tent accommodation where they are receiving food handouts from humanitarian organisations.

Government has since begun the process of relocating the poor villagers from the holding camps to permanent places.

Most families were plunged into complete poverty after floods, caused by incessant rains in Masvingo caused the partial collapse of the Tokwe-Mukosi damwall, washed away crops and homes built over decades by the villagers.

The villagers have, since relocation, been up in arms with government’s insensitive handling of their plight with some claiming to have lost livestock and valuable property during the government assisted relocation to their temporary homes.

It is however the perceived reluctance by government to compensate them for the loss of their homes and livelihoods that has created a fresh crisis.

On his part, Chombo acknowledged government’s indebtedness to the villagers but said funds were not yet available for the expensive exercise.

“Every family will get its dues from government once the funds have been mobilised and lack of compensation should not stop people from moving to permanent plots as there is a real high risk of an outbreak of diseases such as typhoid because of overcrowding,” Chombo told the villagers.

Human rights organisations have also warned of a looming disaster if the affected villagers remained in those living conditions.

Chombo went on to tell the villagers that government would bar food distribution by NGOs if they continued resisting relocation.

“Why should we continue to provide food to families which insist on staying in the camp when their plots to build permanent structures are ready,” Chombo said.

Over 2000 plots have been pegged for the villagers but only 500 are ready to relocate and restart their lives at the plots, it has emerged.

Each villager is expected to receive an average of $4000 from government as compensation for losing a home and property.

Chombo was accompanied during the tour by Minister of State in Vice President Joice Mujuru’s office, Sylvester Nguni and Lands and Resettlement Deputy Minister, Tendai Savanhu.



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    Jenandebvu 9 years ago

    Chombo is daft. Don’t have these people at heart. After resettlement, without money, they still die. Stopping NGOs from dishing for means death. Outbreak of disaster means death, so ziyafana, I would rather die in Chigwizi than grandstand Chimbo and his brainless crew. You would rather persuade them than cohess them. After all its your negligence whc led to all this. Next we hv victims fom Karaba dam wall collapse

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    ZPF had money to fund a 5 million dollar wedding for Mugabe’s daughter Bona, but can’t find money to fund helpless people from Tokwe Mukorsi. Chombo should sell some of his personal assets.

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    KIBBS 9 years ago

    $4000 each – really? They do not have the money and even if they did they would convert it to their own use long before the poor souls received a cent!

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    these dudes hev been accustomed to fake promises plotting to dumb victims resettlement. Thats from riches to rags, get compensation or die trying. Viva dieng trying
    Big up all those who rather die like man
    These materialistic officials must serve the nation

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    munzwa 9 years ago

    Spending the cash is all about priorities Chombo!!!But I would still like to find out when the villagers were first notified of relocation because of the dam filling. Am told there has been no danger of flooding down stream of the dam, therefore no flood “victims” from there.

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    Come next elections these villagers will be lining up to vote for the same people to rule them.They will line up to attend rallies and will be twerking to high Heaven and singing themselves hoarse and will even go to the extent of beating up their neighbours who do not vote.

    I want to be humane and sympathise but it is difficult.It is the children I feel sorry for though. What did they do to deserve such parents?