Dutch farmers demand €23m from Zim

2012-10-03 12:57

Cape Town - Dutch farmers who were forced off their land in Zimbabwe between 2000 and 2002 when the country embarked on its controversial land reform programme, have launched a campaign to force the government to pay them compensation.

Radio Netherlands reported on Wednesday that the farmers took their case to the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), a Washington-based court which operates under the aegis of the World Bank.

The ICSID ruled in their favour in 2009 and ordered Zimbabwe to pay them €8.8m compensation, to be increased by 10% for each year since the land grab.

According to the report, the group is now entitled to a sum of more than €23m and the Dutch government has been pressuring Zimbabwe over the past two years to fulfil its international obligations. A special envoy was appointed in 2010 to negotiate with Zimbabwean officials.

Earlier this year, Zimbabwe finance minister Tendai Biti promised to put forward a payment proposal but to date, he has not honoured this promise, despite being asked to do so in a letter from the Dutch foreign minister in August.

"We wanted to take action earlier, but decided to wait for Biti's proposal," the group’s chairperson Lion Benjamins was quoted as saying. "But now we’re sick of waiting, so we have decided to take steps to show Zimbabwe we’re serious."

The group has launched a website and is lobbying European parliamentarians in an attempt to ensure the EU refuses to lift its sanctions on Zimbabwe until the compensation is paid.

The group is also active in Great Britain, lobbying the government to release frozen assets of the Robert Mugabe regime in order to pay the compensation.

  • ben.louw.5 - 2012-10-03 13:09

    Hahaha. Nice one. But good luck getting water from a stone.

      richard.bosmano - 2012-10-03 13:29

      "The group is also active in Great Britain, lobbying the government to release frozen assets of the Robert Mugabe regime in order to pay the compensation." Perhaps that stone will pour a little water , €23 million is pocket change in comparison to the frozen assets/loot mugarbage has

      sandra.j.rennie - 2012-10-03 14:05

      The only money Zim has is in Bob's Swiss account, and he ain't gonna give it away in a hurry. Grabbing Grace comes first, second and third!

      sean.carbutt - 2012-10-03 15:20

      @sandra, you are right, so lets adopt a true african way of sorting things out. Holland, you have carte blanche to just take it. Wjile you are there, open up all of mad bob's bank accounts and empty out the coffers. Take what is mowing and give the rest back to the poor zimbabweans

      willem.vanrensburg.562 - 2012-10-03 15:31

      Ha Ha And still they vote for them....

  • mpventer - 2012-10-03 13:14

    The SA Govenment (ANC - Another Notaional Crisis) will pay this on behalf of the Zim Government.

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-04 07:50

      mpventer you are a true idiot you know that? why am I not surprized with a surname like venter? Nothing about this case has anything to do with SA or ANC,or do you just feel a constant need to blurt out the words ANC?

  • Eterni80 - 2012-10-03 13:20

    Good luck with that !!! Mugarbage spent your money ages ago on cloning himself. African Leaders - now there's an oxymoron if ever I heard one.

  • chris.nel.35 - 2012-10-03 13:23

    Jip, the SA taxpayer is going to pay this bill.

  • Spiral - 2012-10-03 13:42

    Go Dutch farmers!

  • luke.dekoker - 2012-10-03 13:44

    Now we as South African taxpayers know where part of the HUGE loan granted by the anc government is for?

  • jeremy.thewasp - 2012-10-03 13:55

    Dear Dutch Farmers - Please report to Harare asap Uncle Bob is busy writing out your cheques.... However he has run out of ink and space trying to complete all the zero's $100 000 000 000 000 000 000 should get you an Icecream... Good luck guys - rather go to a Pub and write off as bad debt

  • mart.botha - 2012-10-03 14:00

    Attach their assets in South Africa and abroad.

  • marli.eisern - 2012-10-03 14:06

    Don't worry be happy! The dutch are very innovative in retrieving their money, if necessary they will leave no stone unturned. Finally the liberation rhetoric will migrate from Zimbabwe with its ageing and oncology sick leadership over Beitbridge to Limpopo. Does this sound familiar?

  • gerrit.vanpletzen - 2012-10-03 14:09

    Do like they do in SA. attach their properties, and get warrants of execution, then sell every thig until the debt is paid in full.

  • deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-03 14:13

    Take some property of Zim in other countries, it has worked before for some SA farmers.

  • BigChiefPlumbPudding - 2012-10-03 14:15

    Mugabe will just say no, and then what? Are the Dutch going to go to War over this? Of course not. Kiss the money goodbye, you'll never see it.

  • Peter Zylstra - 2012-10-03 14:17

    The african continent is a thrash heap and it's land is a commodity only in demand by the blacks. No sane white will fight for a piece of land in africam

  • tiaan.truter - 2012-10-03 14:18

    Rofl you can forget about getting your money back...Mugabe used it to pay for his medical treatments

  • alfred.neuman.988 - 2012-10-03 14:19

    The World Bank should take punitive measures against any country who allows Mugabe within their borders. If Mugabe has no foreign hospital to go to he will soon pay up.

  • bouncing.betty.33 - 2012-10-03 15:03

    My gosh isnt News24 just full of angry Afrikaners, wow!

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-04 07:52

      LMAO I agree with you,ranting,raving afrikaaners.

  • lindokuhle.malindela - 2012-10-03 15:07

    How did those white dutch watever you ppl are called get that land in zimbabwe in the 1st place? They expropriated without compensation. Why is it such a problem now that the same is bein done upon them. #do upon others what you would like them do upon you. Thatha mugabe thatha!!! That is african land and should be in da hands of africans, not some colonialism beneficiaries. Ungafa, lala phansi.

      lindokuhle.malindela - 2012-10-03 15:10

      ungaykhokhi wenaMugabe leyo mali, bagula ngamakhanda laba!!!

      ronald.vantoorn.9 - 2012-10-03 15:14

      Zanu pf logic!

      seanrossouwslr - 2012-10-03 21:34

      Do you consider it to be morally OK for a Khoi man to take everything you own? Because if you don't, you have just proven your own argument invalid.

  • wekunetsavamwe - 2012-10-03 15:25

    Day dreaming, leave us alone.

  • amelia.basson - 2012-10-03 16:31

    There's justice in the world after all. Another Zim farmer also won with Afriform's help and a Zimbabwean property in Kenilworth has been attached by a high court.

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-04 07:59

      Yes Amelia that did happen, right here in the ANC run SA that you people hate so much, under black governance,imagine that? Could a black man get any justice against a white person under white rule? Yet you people still rant and rave and complain,voetsek

  • lientjiew - 2012-10-03 17:14

    Lmao - nice I'm loving it...just sad we all know zimbabwe doesn't have a nickel ...

  • croix.mactee - 2012-10-03 19:08


  • enlightened.bowman - 2012-10-03 21:09

    Haaa ha haaa ha ha, anyone got a hankie? This is really good. They want an African government to pay them compensation for running a succesful business? Bob is going to ask THEM for compensation for breathing Zim air. This is almost as good as asking our own locals to perform in government. Will someone explain to the Dutch how this unfortunate continent works? And by the way, Mr Biti was busy with truly important issues such as eating and having sex.

  • sexyfancyface - 2012-12-18 09:37

    Mugabe must can't just grab land that had nothing and when it has something you just take. Do you think Jews can go to Chanceller Merkel and claim that Hitler took their land? Merkel will tell you straight in your face that unfortunately sir or madam Germany and the world has changed since then and a lot of development has taken place since Hitler took that land, unfortunately you will have to go hang at the nearest tree or at least she might compensate you which is still highly unlikely. Unfortunately its only in Africa where people rewind life back to 100 OR even 300 years backward instead of changing things from this point forward.

  • ihekwoabatony.saso - 2012-12-18 10:25

    I hate racism with passion, It's obvious that 99% of white race are racist, but the question is how long will it carry on?, if they do not change from there evil, they shall be perished with it, because they are bringing curse upon themselves everyday, that's why westerner countries are going down economically, because people is boycotting them, it's obvious that Asia and African Continent is doing everything to avoid partnership with them due to greed and selfishness adding with Racist behavior from their arrogant pride mentality, what goes around comes around, it can only take time, but time shall come when they will rely on us to survive, because even bible said it , that the first shall be the last and the last comes first , the end justify the means.

  • marc.hugo.75 - 2012-12-18 11:06

    I like seeing pressure put on the ZANU-PF junta but to be honest, not personally suffering from amnesia, I clearly recall the Dutch giving the Rhodesians nothing but uphill. The same applies to their sanctimonious attitude towards South Africa by interfering in our internal issues. You reap what you sew. Now they can stew in their own juice.

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