Battle for Mt Carmel continues-(22-02-07)

HARARE - Zanu (PF) spokesman, Nathan Shamuyarira is making efforts to obtain an offer letter from minister responsible for Land Reform Didymus Mutasa to enable him to takeover a farm belonging to commercial farmer Ben Freeth, which specialises in mango production, after his forceful attempt was bloc

ked by police.
Shamuyarira is alleged to have sent his brother, Zanu (PF) militant thugs and a lands officer to evict Freeth from Mt Carmel, the country’s largest mango producer last week.
Acting Police Commissioner Godwin Matanga said by evicting the squatters, police were enforcing the judgement of Judge Rita Makarau, which upheld an application by about 60 landowners asking the court to force judicial officials and police to begin immediate evictions of farms that had been occupied but were not under a Section 5 or 8 order.
But State Security minister responsible for Land Reform, Didymus Mutasa, said state personnel would not be used to carry out any evictions of black “demonstrators” on farms.
A defiant Freeth told The Zimbabwean: “I told the men that if they wanted to come and steal what was not theirs then they must come and shoot me. We believe such actions are against God’s law and even against the constitution of Zimbabwe. If the minister is really serious about stealing then he must come and shoot me.”
He is challenging the constitutionality of Amendment no.17 in a landmark case in the Supreme Court. The amendment took away the right of any farmer to legal recourse once his property is targeted for acquisition.
A hearing on Freeth’s challenge is set for March 22 and currently the farmer is protected from any takeover of his farm without an offer letter.
Shamuyarira, who refused to discuss the matter when contacted for comment, is the latest top ruling party official to have used intimidation and threats to takeover white-owned commercial farms.

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