The Zimbabwe government has begun paying white former commercial farmers compensation for land redistributed by force during the country’s “Third Chimurenga” land reform. Bloomberg writes that some received RTGS $55,000 as part of the compensation on Friday 21 June 2019 and that more money would be paid to more.
Wrote the publication:
Twenty-eight farmers received payments of RTGS$55,000 ($8,748) each on Friday, Ben Gilpin, director of the Commercial Farmers Union, said by phone from the capital, Harare. More of them will receive payments tomorrow, he said.
Zimbabwe’s government in 2000 seized farms belonging to mostly white commercial farmers and replaced them with black farmers, saying the move was meant to redress colonial imbalances. The southern African country has budgeted RTGS$53 million ($8.4 million) this year for compensation.
Last month, 737 farmers registered for the compensation, according to the Treasury.
In April 2019, the government announced that it would start paying the white former commercial farmers for improvements on land that had been expropriated.
President Mnangagwa defended the move stating:
In agriculture, the land reform is irreversible and Section 72 of the Constitution is very clear in this regard.
However, the same Constitution provides that no compensation is payable in respect of its acquisition, except for improvements effected on the land before its acquisition