Munyaradzi Wasosa/Augustine Mukaro
TENSION has gripped Manicaland province as Zanu PF supporters have launched an “All Whites Out By 2005” campaign through violent invasions of white-owned properties and sta
ging of anti-white demonstrations, the Zimbabwe Independent heard this week.
The campaign has already resulted in the loss of one life.
Former Kondozi farm outgrower, Peter Spiro-Landos, allegedly shot dead one of the Zanu PF supporters resettled on his farm. Mike Mufambi was shot on Monday evening when a 30-member mob attacked Spiro-Landos at his Riverside Farm homestead.
Spiro-Landos (48), a farmer of Greek descent, was seriously wounded in the attack before being detained by police in hospital in Mutare.
Justice for Agriculture (JAG) vice-chairman John Worsley-Worswick said Spiro-Landos had been asking police to disperse a mob of ruling Zanu PF supporters from his farm in the Odzi district for a week before the attack.
“On Monday evening a mob came to his farm gate and Spiro-Landos went out to talk to them,” Worsley-Worswick said. “The mob pinned him down and in the scuffle, he drew a gun and fired a warning shot in the air. But one man was hit and died.
“When Spiro-Landos failed to return to his homestead after dark, his wife alerted his brother in Mutare town who promptly responded to the SOS call. Spiro-Landos was later found near the farm gate, semi-conscious and bleeding from head wounds,” he said.
Police spokesman Superintendent Oliver Mandipaka confirmed the shooting. “Spiro-Landos committed murder against a black resettled farmer, that is the position,” Mandipaka said.
“We are detaining him at Mutare Central police station. We are definitely charging him for murder and attempted murder,” he said. Mandipaka however dismissed reports of the wave of fresh farm invasions claiming that the situation was peaceful.
Worsley-Worswick told the Independent that a fresh wave of farm invasions had swept across the province. “For the past four years Manicaland was the least affected in terms of farm invasions but has become the prime target of fresh invasions by ruling party supporters ostensibly in retaliation for Chimanimani MP Roy Bennett’s action in parliament,” he said.
“The flavour of the attacks are very racist and for the first time, the invaders are demanding that white farmers leave Zimbabwe,” Worsley-Worswick said.
The Independent can reveal that at least 10 farms have been invaded since last week.
Worsley-Worswick said a dozen violent war veterans and other Zanu PF supporters invaded Madinare farm in Chipinge last Thursday. The 120-hectare farm, owned by Carolyn Cutter, grows coffee and macademia nuts for export.
“On Thursday morning 12 war veterans invaded the farm, broke the fence surrounding the farm house and smashed a lot of doors including the one to her bedroom.”
Other invaded farms over the past week include Hosstede Farm and two others in Chipinge.
Elsewhere, Mpofu River Farm and Nyahowa Farm, both in the Karoi area, another in Tengwe, Mana Pools camp and Masapas Ranch in Chiredzi have also seen occupations.