Zimbabwe:The government today convened an all stakeholders meeting at the Harare International Conference Centre to discuss the issue of compensation for farmers whose land was acquired under the land resettlement programme in early 2000.
According to state owned ZBC, the Minister of Lands and Rural Resettlement, Douglas Mombeshora said out of the 6240 farms acquired under the programme, only 240 previous owners have been fully compensated and 17 partially.
1519 of the acquired farms have been valued to ascertain their value to determine the compensation payable to the previous owner.
Mombeshora told the meeting that it is government’s desire to honour its obligations to pay former farm owners but the pace is slow due to inadequate resources on the part of government.
However, President of the National Commercial Farmers Union (ZNFU), Mr Stansilas Goredema said the former white farmers have no right to demand any compensation as no compensation was paid to the indigenous people when the land was forcibly taken away from them in 1893.
A land expert, Professor Mandiwamba Rukuni said the money required for compensation should be taken over as public debt and enable normal production activities to take place on the acquired land.
Mr Peter Steyl, representing the Commercial Farmers Union, said former farm owners who bought their land after independence in 1980 should be allowed to go back on their land and resume their business like any other Zimbabwean.