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April 15, 2024

The Deceitful Dynamics Behind the Dismal Demolitions

By Ndaba Sibanda

The Deceitful Dynamics Behind The Dismal Demolitions

When I heard of the arbitrary evictions of poor persons,
families, communities, of harsh and hurried demolitions
without court orders, I sensed the odor of greed and deceit,
questionable land resolutions to the delicate land question.

In Zim, the start of Feb saw the pitiless pulling down
of the poor people’s houses and other extra erections –
all in the glorified name and refrain of seeking to address
“the illicit and ill-fated land occupations and buildings”.

Of course, land is the soul of the people. Isn’t it?
Was it not a uniting point for African patriotism?
Didn’t the 1930 Land Apportionment Act confine
the bulk blacks to the mostly arid native reserves?

If the white settlers, who constituted 4.5 percent
of the dwellers and had 51 percent of the prime land,
the poor blacks had 22 percent of slightest fertile land.
A tool of power, they could neither buy nor sell it freely.

Did the loud land grabs of the years 2000 and 2001
resolve and reform the land ownership challenges?
Come August 31, 2020, the ‘reformed’ regime patently
seeking legitimacy and Western approval, made a U-turn.

It indicated that the white farmers who had ‘lost their land’
would be squared! The poor government had decided to pay
a titanic $3.5bn in compensation to local white farmers for
infrastructure on the farms they lost. Hadn’t the blacks lost it?

Year 2024, cash talk is that the purposes, plans, crescendos
and innuendos of personalities, persuasions, patronage,
new prices, power, politics and cash are at the very center
of the dreary demolitions. New settings. Earnings. Elitism.

On the receiving end of the depressing demolitions
are none other than the defenseless, poor and prone;
the anxious, sorrowful souls in the villages and cities,
remember, too, that the land belongs to the President.

We saw viral videos of stranded and screaming women
adorned in Zanu Pf regalia up in arms. Justice served,
some said. Yet, where was the rule of law? The constitution?
Due process? Illicit settlements versus illegal razing. Cruel power.

Article © Ndaba Sibanda. All rights reserved.
Published on 2024-03-18
Image(s) are public domain.
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