Don’t legalise Made’s failures, farmers appeal

Staff Writer

FARMERS’ organisations have appealed to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Lands and Agriculture not to endorse the failures of Agriculture minister



rdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif”>Joseph Made by approving the Land Acquisition (Amendment) Bill.

The government has said the Bill will consolidate the gains of the land reform programme. Farmers’ representatives yesterday said it would not add value to agriculture.


Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union president Davison Mugabe attacked the ongoing amendments of the Act saying it was delaying progress.


“We are spending more time on amending Acts after Acts and movements of people instead of focusing on production,” Mugabe said.


In his presentation to the committee yesterday, Commercial Farmers’ Union president Doug Taylor-Freeme said the amendments proposed had led to inconsistencies in the application of the law over the past four years.


“Farmers have been forcibly evicted when their farms were not even listed under Section 5,” Taylor-Freeme said.


“Others have obtained High Court judgements nullifying Section 8s and yet they have been evicted. Others have met with none of government’s criteria for acquisition but were acquired nevertheless,” he said.


“This is not the first time the minister has introduced legislation to cover his tracks, legalise his mistakes, or justify his actions,” he said.


He warned that if the Bill was approved, it would erode investor confidence which the central bank is seeking to build.


The Bill before the Parliamentary Legal Committee for consideration seeks to remove bottlenecks in the acquisition process to assist the government’s process of grabbing land arbitrarily.