(Bloomberg) — Zimbabwe’s white farmers can avoid eviction by formally registering their farms and reducing plot sizes, Lands and Rural Resettlement Minister Douglas Mombeshora said.
“We’ve asked the farmers to regularize their stay on farms and told them they need to downsize,” Mombeshora said by phone from the capital, Harare, on Friday. “There is no farmer who is going to be chased away from his property.”
Harare-based Newsday reported last week that white farmers on land gazetted for acquisition in the southern African nation will be given 90 days to leave, citing Mombeshora. Three days earlier, the newspaper said the government would limit the size of farms and restrict owners to one plot.
The country’s ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front evicted most of the country’s 3,500 large-scale white farmers, often violently, from 2000, slashing agricultural exports and deterring investment. About 300 remain on their land, according to Zimbabwe’s Commercial Farmers Union.
Several calls to the CFU offices in Harare weren’t immediately answered, while the union’s director, Hendrik Olivier, didn’t respond to e-mailed questions.