Police boot out villagers to make way for Grace

HARARE - Heavily-armed police yesterday descended on Manzou Farm in Mazowe and demolished dozens of houses ostensibly to pave way for First Lady Grace Mugabe.

The demolitions got underway despite a court order barring law enforcement agents from removing the farmers.

Villagers, who declined to be named fearing victimisation, told the Daily News yesterday that police arrived in four trucks in the morning and began razing down their properties.

A Daily News crew visited Manzou, formerly Arnold Farm, which is adjacent to Grace’s orphanage, but was denied entry by the heavily-armed police.

“Police came here in four Nissan UD trucks and deployed all over sections of the farm,” one villager said.

“In the section where I stay, we were told to remove our household items before they demolished the houses.

“So far in my section, about 25 houses have been demolished. I don’t know how many houses have been demolished in other sections but it can add to something like 100.”

Gift Mtisi, a lawyer representing the villagers, said he had written to police requesting them to stop the demolitions or he would file papers citing contempt of court.

“We are in communication with the police,” Mtisi said.

“We have a court order and we did not file any papers. We only wrote to the police informing them to stop the demolitions. If they refuse, we will file papers for contempt of court.

“We gave the police up to 4:30pm (yesterday) to stop their actions. If they resist, tomorrow (today) we will file papers.”

Police spokespersons Charity Charamba and her deputy, Paul Nyathi, were unreachable for comment yesterday.

Manzou was a game park before Zanu PF supporters invaded it at the height of the land reform programme in 2000.

In March last year, heavily armed police stormed the area and razed villagers’ homes to the ground, forcing them out of the property.

The families were later dumped in Rushinga at Lazy Farm and in Concession at Blagdon Farm.

Five of the villagers approached the High Court, which ruled that the villagers had the right to stay at the property until government provided alternative land.

Their stay at Manzou Game Park had been protected by the 2006 Rural Land Occupiers Act.

They had tried to engage government to regularise their stay to no avail until Grace identified the land for expansion of her business hub in Mazowe.

The first lady a few months ago confirmed that she wanted to build a secondary school, hospital and university to be named after her husband, President Robert Mugabe.

The First Family already own a vast dairy project, Gushungo Dairies, an orphanage and an elite primary school in the area.

The 49-year-old former typist has also grabbed 1 500 hectares from Interfresh Holdings which houses the Mazowe Citrus Estate.

In August last year, she tore into expelled Justice deputy minister Fortune Chasi for working against her intentions to acquire more land to expand her orphanage in Mazowe.

Chasi is the local MP for Mazowe North, the area under which Mugabe’s orphanage is located.


Comments (17)

Latest reports indicate that Gadaffi, his family and cronies siphoned over $220 billion in cash and bank deposits to South Africa which is now at the centre of an high profile investigation. Until he met his brutal end Gadaffi had no respect for anyone but himself; he thought he was God. As things stand to today his remaining family and cronies are now on the run the rest having been arrested or killed. Until these monsters are stopped there is no limit to what they are going to do. Zimbabweans deserve what they are getting until they stand up and fight.

War Vet - 8 January 2015

Welcome to the Republic of Mugabe.

Zims - 8 January 2015

God will not be mocked. There is a terrible judgment coming unless our lot repent. Mujuru should count her blessings she got thrown out. if I was her I would get my house in order before God. He knows exactly where every cent of Zimbabwe's money has gone. "Woe to him who builds his house with unrighteousness and his chambers by injustice...yet your eyes and your heart are for nothing but your covetousness; for shedding innocent blood and practicing oppression and violence.' Jeremiah 22:13,17

Righteous Justice - 8 January 2015

All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others. I feel for those who bank on Mugabe being sincere about alleviating their poverty.

Galore 123 - 8 January 2015

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CARTRIDGE GALLERY - 8 January 2015

When one goes to make a report at any police station, 99 % of the time you are told they can't do anything because they do not have transport. Isn't it amazing however when four big trucks are suddenly made available to go and raze down to the ground dwellings of more than 200 poor peasants because Grace has barked? The fake PHD holder has her fellow undeserving human rights award winning clown doing the same too in far off Chipinge. If this isn't personalising the country, I don't know what is.

Dr Know - 8 January 2015

Wake stop voting for zanu you chaps .Come election time you are lied to by zanu and you vote for it . See now who is stupid . You. Do you think people in Harare and Byo who stay with Mugabe are stupid when they do not vote for him and they want him out a.s.p but you thought you are more clever than these people the .Game areas are for wild life and you have no business there unless you are an animal .I will never feel sorry for idiots thoko!!!!!!

Diibulaanyika - 8 January 2015

Stop being thathekiles like mugodoyi you just follow any thing and be used for political gains and then dumped you deserve it bcoz you voted for it next vote wisely

Diibulaanyika - 8 January 2015

These cronies are going to continue treating Zimbabwe as their pocket business in the Gushungo clan until they are stopped. However, as Zimbabwe we proud ourselves as peace loving people who are always willing to be stepped over countless times silently all in the name of peace loving. It is also unfortunate that we still have many Zimbabweans who continuosly sing hyms of praise to such barbaric goons with all ignorance of what is happening in their own houses. My guess is the same those already spoken, Zimbabweans deserve what they are going through all because of peace loving. Let the peace continue until we say no to this fake peace. There is no peace when innocent people continue to die, women are illtreated by other women, hunger and poverty continue to roam our houses nomatter small or big. Wake up Zimbabwe and let us together say no to these goons. Ironically the same people whose land is being grabbed are the ones who grabbed the same land from its former occupiers. Grace the grabber is in the habit of grabbing everything she wants and no one says no even Nyagura could not say no to a PhD grabbing even if he new what it would do to his career and credibility, he gladly signed the PhD. I am deeply sorry for us Zimbabweans.

Zimbostyle - 8 January 2015

I agree with zimbostyle,its a case of RBZ during Gono era,he printed zim$ until cows came back home yet he probably warned of future effects to the economy,in zw,bad things are good allways,

kamwenje - 8 January 2015

Its shame these people are now leaving the game park settlement in manner similar to how they got there in the 1st place. Mostly likey they ate up all the animals. It was jambanja going in. Its jambanja going out. The Land reform is one big fat lie. My advise to them is this situation requires these people to round up all under 18 pupils in this game park settlement and take them to the nearest "place of safety". As it stands they are now of no fixed abode. I understand that there is an orphanage home next to this game park farm. An orphanage home is a place of safety. They must "BABY DUMP" all minors there whilst they seek alternatives. The owner of that orphanage is very filthy rich and can bring more goodies from the far east. Move on with your lives next time stop zvekutamba "kongonya", singing and dancing in front of these evil thieves. Kurare imbwa nemukaka mangwana ichakuruma....

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