Manicaland Provincial Affairs Minister Ellen Gwaradzimba said that the government will soon roll out an operation to evict people who illegally settled on timber plantations in Chimanimani and other parts of the province.
Gwaradzimba revealed this during the commissioning of new machinery acquired by Allied Timbers at Erin Forest Plantation on Wednesday. She said:
We were given the mandate [by President Emmerson Mnangagwa] to flush out all illegal settlers. We should remember that plantations are a sensitive area.
We will soon roll out ‘Operation Dzoka Kwawakabva’ and I am warning people illegally settled in plantations to pack their belongings and go back to their roots.
Gwaradzimba said the illegal settlers should not plant crops this coming rainy season as they will be evicted before harvesting.
She added that if the settlers fail to move out voluntarily, the government will be left with no choice but to use force to drive them out.