RIOT police and soldiers on Saturday attacked a group of Zanu PF youths and war veterans who had invaded Chihoza Farm, in Daisy Hill, Chipinge East to stop Edwin Chinotimba, the son of Buhera South legislator Joseph Chinotimba from occupying the farm.
The Zanu PF youths and war veterans claimed that Chinotimba had several other farms in Buhera South and did not hail from Chipinge and therefore could not be given priority ahead of them to occupy the 175 hectare farm with Macadamia nuts ready for harvest.
But riot police responded brutally by beating them up, forcing them out of the farm to give way to Chinotimba to occupy it.
Government, through former Manicaland Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Christopher Mushohwe, last year issued an offer letter to Chinotimba to occupy the land.
“He (Edwin Chinotimba) is not from Chipinge. Why should he be allocated land from the area ahead of people from Chipinge? We say no to this,” said one of the youths.
Chipinge East MP Winmore Mlambo said he had for a long time been asking government to give land to local war veterans and local people who did not have land.
“For a very long time we have been writing letters requesting for land and now my people are surprised to see Chinotimba coming here with an offer letter claiming that he was given a farm,” Mlambo said.
He claimed that Chinotimba, a councillor in Mashonaland Central has another 700 hectare farm.
“My constituents are concerned with the issuance of farms to outsiders when many locals remained landless. President (Robert Mugabe), at the 6th Zanu PF congress, said the policy is no longer one-man-one-farm, but one-family-one-farm,” said Mlambo.
Efforts to get a comment from Chinotimba were fruitless as his mobile number was unavailable.
Contacted for comment yesterday over the riot police and soldier attacks Manicaland provincial police spokesperson Inspector Enoch Chishiri said: “I am only hearing it from you. I am not aware of that.”