via Ailing farmer takes land grab UK Dr to court – New Zimbabwe 14/10/2015
THE Centenary farmer who is said to be held hostage by “agents” of a British medical doctor who wants to expropriate his farm has approached the High Court seeking an order to kick out the invaders.
In an application made earlier this week Philip Ranken’s son Barry said his father is now running out of food as the stand-off the began on October 9th continues.
“The 2nd applicant (Ranken) is running out of food and 1st respondent and his agents do not seem to care.
“He is a heart patient and his health is fast deteriorating such that if this court does not act on urgent basis the situation could get worse,” Barry prayed with the court.
Barry, through his lawyers Mugiya and Macharaga, pleaded for a provisional order to force British citizen Sylvester Nyatsuro’s removal from the farm.
“The 1st respondent (Nyatsuro) and his agents stormed the applicant (Barry)’s father’s farm at Kingstone Deveril, Centenary and besieged the applicant’s father and took him hostage from the 9th of October to this day.
“The applicants have been locked in the house and not allowed to leave the property unless if he is moving his property out of his own house,” he said.
He accused police both in Mashonaland Central and nationally of turning a “blind eye on the matter” adding they had claimed “it is a land issue yet this is clearly a criminal act”.
The minister of Lands and Resettlement (Douglas Mombeshora), the officer in charge of ZRP Centenary and Police Commissioner General Augustine Chihuri as 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th are cited as respondents respectively in the application.
Barry said his father had been allocated Deveril Farm in 1994 “after he had to give up his two other farms for land resettlement to the government”.
The farm, Barry argues, was initially listed for acquisition in 2000 before being delisted a year later “which means the farm retained its original title where my father is the sole title holder of the land”.
Nyatsuro, 45, is said to hold a British passport, having moved to the UK from Zimbabwe around 2003.
The General Practitioner (GP) reports claim runs a slimming clinic – Willows Medical Centre – in Nottingham and recently announced an initiative to establish a database of Zimbabwean professionals in the diaspora which is said to have the backing of the Presidency.
Contacted for comment Ranken said the situation had not changed but Centenary police had visited his besieged farm and taken a statement from him.
“Police were here this morning (early Wednesday) and they took a statement from me.
“They did not do much except to ask the invaders not to disrupt my farming activities but I am still locked up. It is not doing much to help the situation,” said Ranken from his farm.