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Not all whites stole land

IN reply to President Mugabe’s statement at Independence celebrations this year regarding anyone having any grievances on land to write in, he was referring to the whites who have left and are now post delivery men and milkmen in New Zeal

and, Australia and the UK.

In 1980 a lot of Zimbabweans bought land and developed it. This was not given by the colonial powers. It took years to pay installments and develop the land which was bought through the then Agricultural Finance Corporation (AFC), now Agribank.

This land was available to every race – blacks/whites/coloured – and some of the white farmers’ neighbours were blacks who bought land in the same areas.

We have had land seized from whites only and the excuse – we stole it from the blacks! My neighbours are still there and I have kept in touch with them.

Why were our yearly installments accepted if this was the case and the agreements not cancelled in 1980? I made payments for four years during the Smith regime and 16 to the present government.

Why did the present government accept my payments after 1980?

Some of the younger generation were only born in the 70s and had put everything into their farms only to have it taken away in the prime of their lives. They didn’t even know anything about colonial 1890.

This makes one recall President Mugabe’s speech back in 1980 at Cooksey Hall in Chinhoyi. After listening to the president speaking we thought we had been wrong about him and gave him a standing ovation.

I purchased the book Mugabe by David Smith and Colin Simpson (1980) and still have it in my possession. President Mugabe stated he would not interfere with property, see pages 169, 197 and 206.

His subordinates were still grabbing farms as of May 20 – some in their names and one or two in their wives’ names. These could be named if required.

My grandparents ran a trading store in Zvimba (Chikaka Store) close to Kutama Mission and several Italian fathers and nuns used to visit quite regularly. They also ran a dispensary at Chikaka store on behalf of the mission for minor ailments and treatment to spare the community having to walk about 20km back to the mission. This was done as a community service for no charge. My grandmother was a German nurse.

I have no intention of leaving Zimbabwe, having lost three ranches and the cropping farm to resettlement exercises.

I cannot find a job as a milk or post delivery man in Chinhoyi as there is no milk and the average person cannot afford the postal service charges, let alone the envelopes.

Having posted four letters three months ago to New Zealand, the US, Australia and Canada at an average of $10 400 per letter, not one has reached its destination. Possibly our ex-Zimbabweans haven’t delivered them yet or kept the stamps.



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