Land saga epitomises all that is rotten

I AM surprised at the outrage being expressed at heavyweight members of Zanu-PF who have been caught ejecting the current occupiers and helping themselves to hundreds of farms.



a, sans-serif”>To me, the whole land saga epitomises all that is rotten in Zimbabwe.

When the land grab started after Mugabe’s defeat in the 2000 referendum, I was a member of the Mazowe Rural District Council.


At the last meeting I attended, councillors were being encouraged to shout out the names of farms in their wards to be “seized”.


I was disgusted at what amounted to a feeding frenzy as councillors fell over themselves to shout out the names of farms. Only one councillor, a black colleague with strong principles from the rural areas, declined to be involved. I walked out of this meeting in rage and disgust, and subsequently resigned. I felt deeply ashamed at the behaviour of my fellow councillors.


What was so disappointing at the time was that no one, not even the MDC said: “This is wrong. This is theft. These people, like it or not, bought and paid for their farms. They did not steal the land from anyone.”


Actually, not even the CFU had the guts to say this, to call a spade a spade. Why was there this reluctance to speak the truth? Was it because all black Zimbabweans harboured a deep hatred for their white compatriots? Or was it because Zanu PF had psychologically out-manoeuvred everyone and made it politically incorrect to challenge the lie? But that no one did challenge the lie will forever be a shameful chapter in Zimbabwe’s history.


Anyone with half a brain knew at the time that this was nothing more than a ploy by Mugabe and Zanu PF, and that the CIO and army were involved in the organisation of the invasions.


Anyone with half a brain also knew that most resettlement areas were a disaster and knew as well that there was plenty of unused land for any genuine agrarian reform. Yet no one shouted loud and clear that the emperor had no clothes.


For this lack of moral courage at the time, Zimbabwe has suffered dearly, and will continue to suffer until moral courage surfaces. To condone a lie is almost as bad as telling the lie oneself, and that is what the people of Zimbabwe willingly did.


So why should it be a surprise, why should there be outrage when the chefs who set the whole dirty business in motion throw their pawns off the land?


Everyone stood by when the land was taken from its rightful owners. What moral high ground can the majority of Zimbabweans claim when they raised no voices of protest at the time?


Charles Frizell,

UK.