from NDABENI MLOTSHWA in Bulawayo
BULAWAYO, (CAJ News) – ZIMBABWE Republic Police (ZRP) continue occupying a key wildlife conservancy and farming venture west of the country despite a 12-year court order.
Operations at the combined farm and safari operation have come to a standstill because of the illegal occupation.
Dave Joubert, the dispossessed operator currently resident in neighbouring South Africa, decried the invasion of the Portwe Estate and Bembesi conservancy and disregard of the court order issued in 2007.
He said the failure of the government to remove police from the property in Bubi district of Matabeleland North Province, was in contrast to the message by President Emmerson Mnangagwa that Zimbabwe was open for business.
Joubert has engaged outspoken local chief, Nhlanhla Felix Ndiweni, to exert pressure on law enforcers to vacate the land in line with the court order.
He said he has adopted a conciliatory approach to the situation, inspired by positive statements by governments on land grabbed at the height of farm invasions sanctioned by ruling ZANU-PF party youth and war veterans beginning 2000.
However, Joubert said political interference and policy anomalies frustrated efforts to regain the property.
“Even entry to the farm or an audit of property taken by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) at the invasion has been frustrated and blocked by senior officers operating from the Hwange district,” he said.
Armed police took over the property while Joubert was out of the country.
They allegedly forced his wife and mother-in-law and some workers off the land.
– CAJ News