Don't disrupt operations on white-owned farms - Zim minister

2014-09-18 14:54

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Cape Town – Zimbabwe cannot afford to kick white farmers off the land and then import products such as milk from South Africa, Manicaland Provincial Affairs Minister Chris Mushohwe has reportedly said, in contradiction to President Robert Mugabe's land policy.

According to, Mushohwe warned villagers in Chipinge that disrupting operations of the few remaining white farmers in the province would not be tolerated. He added that the disruptions could have disastrous repercussions on Zimbabwe's already fragile economy.

"The remaining white commercial farmers... must not be disturbed because we need milk. We cannot continue to import milk from South Africa. We need to boost production and also export. This will also affect our economy if we disturb their operations," Mushohwe was quoted as saying.

Chipinge is one of the Zimbabwe's agricultural hubs, with farmers engaged in production of timber, tea, coffee, sugarcane and citrus fruits.

'Go back to England'

The district also has dairy farms, some of which were decimated during President Robert Mugabe's land reform programme, the report said.

Mushohwe's remarks contradicted Mugabe's recent demand for the removal of the remaining white farmers from Zimbabwe.

Mugabe recently told a gathering in his rural Zvimba home area that the remaining whites in the country should go back to England.

"Don't they [whites] know where their ancestors came from? The British who are here should all go back to England," Mugabe was quoted as saying.

This was not the first time that Mugabe made such pronouncements over land ownership by whites in the southern African country.

In July Mugabe made headlines when he vowed whites would never be allowed to own land in Zimbabwe. He said they could only be allowed to own companies, industries and apartments.

Mugabe's critics, however, said his statements were retrogressive to the country's development as they undermined efforts to attract foreign investment.

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa  |  zimbabwe land reforms

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