Minister blames black farmers for shortages

MASVINGO - Agriculture minister Rugare Gumbo last week launched a scathing attack on newly settled black farmers, saying they had failed to produce enough food for the nation.
Speaking at the Zimbabwe Farmers’ Union national congress in Masvingo, Gumbo said the farmers had let the natio

n down by failing to maintain production on former white-owned farms.
“I am disappointed that our new farmers have proved to be failures since the start of the land-reform programme in 2000. In spite of all the support government has been pouring into the agricultural sector, productivity and under-utilisation of land remain issues of concern.
“I urge you to continue working hard so that the importation of food will become history,” said Gumbo.
Critics say authorities, battling an economic crisis that has seen inflation zoom past 6,000 percent, failed to support the newly resettled black farmers.
Mugabe denies that his land reforms caused hunger, and blames the food crisis on natural causes.

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