‘Zanu PF officials grab State land’

CHIEF Jahana and villagers from Shangani in Insiza North, Matabeleland South, have petitioned President Emmerson Mnangagwa to rein in Zanu PF district officials from reportedly grabbing and selling State land set aside for resettlement in ward 22.

BY SILAS NKALA

Southern Eye is in possession of a petition dated September 29 in which Chief Jahana cited Zanu PF Nsango district chairperson, Shame Mathe and 41 other party members as culprits in the scam.

“I ‘Chief Jahana of Insiza North’ have been approached by my village heads concerning this matter. I felt … compelled to write this petition with the concerns to you after the district and province have failed to solve this problem.
Massive grazing land has been lost and many human and livestock lives have been lost,” the petition read.

“Despite numerous reports over these issues affecting my area of jurisdiction, government has continued to turn a blind eye…. Zanu PF district chairperson Mathe has usurped the chief’s authority and power by allocating land under the chief’s jurisdiction without the knowledge of the chief. There has been massive sale of resettlement land to individuals by the Zanu PF ward 22 district leadership.”

The villagers said communal pastures have been pegged and sold to land seekers.

The villagers said public spats between the Zanu PF leadership and Chief Jahana have forestalled development in the area.

“On September 24, 2018, there was serious bloody conflict between those loyal to the chief against the Zanu PF leadership. Children whose parents are loyal to Chief Jahana have been chased away from school … We ask those who do not want the chief to vacate the area,” the petition read.

The petition is yet to be handed to the President’s Office.

Contacted for comment, Mathe said he was hearing about the issue for the first time.

“It’s my first time to hear about that petition and since I am hearing it for the first time, it is difficult for me to comment on that. But what I can say is that most of the things said in that petition are not true,” he said.

Zanu PF Matabeleland South chairperson Rabelani Choeni declined to comment referring Southern Eye to Provincial Affairs minister, Abednico Ncube, who is responsible for land and resettlement in the party. But, Ncube was not reachable for comment.