First Lady Grace Mugabe has reportedly renewed her bid to evict villagers at Arnold Farm in Mazowe to expand her business empire following disclosures that the Lands ministry officials this week started parcelling the farm to pave way for the First Family.
Speaking to NewsDay, a villager, Leonard Mukaro said Lands ministry officials informed the villagers to leave the area as the First Family had purchased about 1 200 hectares of their land for the business expansion. Said Mukaro:
We first saw them on Monday, they were busy pegging on our stands. They came again on Tuesday. Today (yesterday) they came and we had to ask one of their officials who told us that the farm has been acquired by Alpha and Omega, so we are being told to leave the area anytime. We really don’t know where to go. One Tuesday, four trucks came in. One was written Alpha and Omega, while the other three had white number plates. We asked them and they said they were from the Ministry of Lands and wanted us to leave the farm because the land now belongs to Alpha and Omega.
Efforts by NewsDay to get a comment from Mashonaland Central provincial minister Martin Dinha, Presidential spokesperson George Charamba and Lands minister Douglas Mombeshora were fruitless. However, a top Lands ministry official confirmed the farm had been taken over by the First Family and a Chinese firm will establish a blasting factory, but the villagers may be spared evictions.