Government land reform climbdown vindicates us: MDC-T

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MDC-T spokesperson Obert Gutu

THE MDC-T claims the climbdown by the government over contract farming and working with white former commercial farmers was a vindication of their arguments about the land reform programme.

BATANAI MUTASA
OWN CORRESPONDENT

In a statement, MDC-T spokesperson, Obert Gutu, said the party has always advocated for responsible land and agriculture management and a comprehensive agrarian reform programme, as a means to ensure food security for all the people of Zimbabwe regardless of race, colour or creed.

“Dating back from the year 2000, the MDC advocated for a sustainable and productive land reform programme that will particularly benefit historically disadvantaged people,” he said.

“The MDC has been vindicated, once again, by the latest climbdown on the land policy by the Zanu PF government.”

The government now allows farming joint ventures between new black farmers and white former commercial farmers which had been prohibited since the start of the programme, in what is seen as a major climbdown.

Gutu said while his party has always called for sustainable and equitable redistribution of land to all Zimbabweans, the Zanu PF regime hijacked the programme and completely failed to effect a viable land reform exercise leading to the total collapse of the commercial agriculture sector.

In the statement, the MDC–T, however, castigated the government’s decision to relax the conditions of the land reform process, saying it is ill timed and insincere, since the country had already suffered the consequences of the demise of the agricultural sector.

“The manufacturing and industrial sectors have fallen on hard times due to the failure by the Zanu PF regime to successfully execute a sustainable and holistic land redistribution exercise,” the party said.

The MDC-T accused Zanu PF of belatedly attempting to undertake a damage control exercise in order to reverse the devastating consequences of a violent and unsustainable land reform programme.

“Unfortunately, the violent so called land reform exercise that was carried out by the Zanu PF regime over the last 15 years has pauperised the majority of the people of Zimbabwe,” Gutu continued.

He said as a direct result of the Zanu PF regime’s ineptitude and gross incompetence, Zimbabwe has been reduced from being the bread basket of Africa, to being a basket case.