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Farmer blames top cop for chaos

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PROMINENT Beitbridge farmer Ian Ferguson has accused the district’s top police officer of paying a blind eye to wanton poaching and theft of property at Denlynian Farm.

BY STAFF REPORTER

The game farm was invaded in 2013 even after the government said it was not interested in the property as it was not fit for human habitation.

Ferguson has a string of court cases against invaders, but police have reportedly refused to help the Deputy Sheriff to evict them.

The farmer yesterday accused police officer commanding Beitbridge Chief Superintendent Patrick Majuta of abetting the lawlessness at the farm by failing to act impartially.

“The district police officer (Majuta), when he refused to provide the Sheriff with an escort, requested the names of people who were still on the property and had been served with ejectment orders from the High Court and said he would have them arrested,” Ferguson said.

“The names were supplied and to our knowledge none of these persons have been arrested.”

Last month, the farmer who is also being hounded out of his Benfer citrus estate, wrote to police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri complaining about Majuta’s conduct.

Majuta last week told Southern Eye that police could only deal with the deputy Sherriff not an individual.

However, Ferguson said the police had refused to co-operate with the Deputy Sheriff.

The illegal settlers allegedly being protected by the police have been identified as Julius Mbedzi, Remember Ndou, Sobala Ncube, Excellent Mangavha, Erasmus Nare, Mthulisi Moyo, Obias Ndou, Elphas Siziba and a Mhlanga.

Ferguson accused police of allowing one of the invaders to illegally import heifers from South Africa, which are being kept at the game farm.
Meanwhile, Ferguson has accused the district land officer Mutilisa Moyo of abusing the law by harassing him.

Moyo reportedly this week gave the farmer 24 hours to leave Benfer Citrus Estate after he allocated the property to Darlington Muleya, a soldier and a Nyathi from Zezane area.

“It was actually my son who phoned the land officer Mutilisa Moyo to ask him what was going on as we had not been served with an eviction notice followed by due process according to the Ministry of Lands’ own protocol,” he said.

“This lands officer as expected was blunt and rude and said it was no longer policy to follow any protocol and that Darlington Muleya had been granted an offer letter signed by the Lands minister for Benfer Estate.

“He said he had every right to occupy our residences and that he (Moyo) was now only required to give 24-hour notice to any white commercial farmer to vacate the farm and their homesteads.”

He said Moyo was behind the chaos at Denlynian, which was once a prime game sanctuary.

“This lands officer is the same man who in contempt of High Court orders served on him personally as well as the Lands minister on numerous occasions from as early as August 2010,” he said.

“Up to just this last month he has been issuing offer letters to persons to invade the wildlife conservation farm and telling them that they had nothing to fear as nothing would happen to them.”

Majuta and Moyo were not reachable for comment yesterday.

Ferguson says he has lost nearly $1 million in revenue, property and legal fees fighting the invasion of the game sanctuary.

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