The Minister of Lands, Perrance Shiri has said that the government is facing difficulties in addressing the multiple farm ownership issue. He said that this is because most of those with multiple farms registered the properties in other names.
This comes after the ongoing land audit, and the 2003 and 2005 land audit reports revealed underhand deals and multiple farm ownership mostly by Cabinet ministers, top civil servants and other top Zanu PF officials.
The reports suggest that some politicians registered some of their farms in the names of their relatives including school going children. Owning more than one-farm is contrary to the one-man, one-farm principle that informed the land reform programme.
Speaking during a National Assembly session on Wednesday last week, Shiri said:
Yes, we have got some multiple farm owners but they seem not to be as many as we would want to believe. It would appear there are no cases where you will find farm A being owned by Shiri, farms B and C again by Shiri — people could have used proxies and it is very difficult to establish that an individual is a proxy because in their own right those individuals qualify to be resettled.
Nevertheless, if there is any evidence which points to the existence of multiple farm ownership, we are more than prepared to move in and take corrective action.
The land reform programme was meant to give land to the landless natives and to boost the agriculture sector. Some farms farms are reportedly lying idle as owners lack capacity to manage them.
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