Chiefs protest over plots’ allocation

13 May, 2016 - 00:05 0 Views
Chiefs protest over plots’ allocation Traditional Chiefs

The Herald

George Maponga in MASVINGO
Chiredzi chiefs have protested to Government over alleged marginalisation of communities in the district in the allocation of sugarcane plots in the Lowveld under the land reform programme.

Chiefs Gudo, Tshovani and Sengwe claim that only a small percentage of people from the district were allocated sugarcane plots in Chiredzi out of the thousands indigenous beneficiaries who got plots since the inception of the land reform programme.

The claims by the three chiefs come after Government through the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement recently issued 138 model A2 offer letters to indigenous farmers.

The new beneficiaries have been waiting since 2012 to be issued with new offer letters after initially getting documents for land that had not been developed.

Speaking after a heated meeting attended by the Chiredzi chiefs and members of the Masvingo provincial lands committee led by provincial affairs Minister Senator Shuvai Mahofa, Lands and Rural Resettlement Minister Dr Douglas Mombeshora said the allocation of 138 new offer letters for cane plots in the Lowveld was above board.

‘’We decided to come down after chiefs from Chiredzi had complained that the recent allocation of sugarcane plots in the Lowveld left out the majority of people from Chiredzi but we showed the chiefs that according to the list of names that we compiled the latest offer letters, 60 percent of the beneficiaries were from Chiredzi with the other small percentages distributed amongst war veterans, civil servants and members of the uniformed forces,’’ he said.

The lands minister said he was going to seek guidance from the Presidency on the way forward over the contentious allocation of the cane plots.

‘’We will inform our superiors about our findings and give recommendations on what we think is the way forward and then we will stand guided by what the superiors will say should be the way forward on the issue,’’ he said.

Dr Mombeshora said beneficiaries of the 138 new cane plots offer letters have not yet been given their documents since pegging of the plots was still ongoing.

‘’I have teams from Ministry (Lands and Rural Resettlement) who are busy on the ground right now pegging sugar cane plots because we do not want to give people offer letters for plots that do not exist,’’ said Dr Mombeshora.

Sources who attended the meeting between the Dr Mombeshora, the chiefs and members of the Masvingo provincial lands committee said the Chiredzi traditional leaders wanted re-allocation of the 138 new cane plots.

They reportedly argued that the selection process was heavily skewed against people from Chiredzi district.

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