By Lovemore Kadzura
White farmers who remained after the fast-track Land Reform Programme should continue with their activities, as the new dispensation treats all Zimbabweans equally.
Minister for Manicaland Provincial Affairs Monica Mutsvangwa said this while addressing Headlands residents who included white farmers during the handover of three farms to Manicaland State University recently.
Minister Mutsvangwa said the new Government under President Emmerson Mnangagwa treated every citizen equally regardless of colour.
“The new dispensation under President ED Mnangagwa does not victimise anybody,” she said. “We do not discriminate because of colour or anything and as such I want to say we are aware of your (white farmers) expertise in farming.
“The Minister of Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement is on record about making sure the land we have taken is fully utilised. The land reform programme is irreversible, but if we have land in Manicaland there is nothing wrong to offer you because you are also Zimbabweans just like us.”
Minister Mutsvangwa said the land reform programme did not mean land belonged to black people only, but to every Zimbabwean.
“When I got appointed Resident Minister there were certain things that I noted had been done unprocedurally at Lesbury Estate where the Smart family was being ill-treated. We immediately corrected the anomalies. The new dispensation is about following proper procedures.”
Mr Robert Smart of Lesbury Estate outside Rusape, who had his farm unprocedurally taken from him last year, got it back under the new dispensation.
He said he was happy that the Government was treating everyone without discrimination.
“There is no such thing as white commercial farmer, we are all farmers,” said Mr Smart. “Whether commercial, middle or small-scale, we are the same. We are very happy the Government is doing what it promised to do, which was to get us back to the farm.
“That has happened. We are all Zimbabweans; born and bred here.”