Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Zimbabwe's so called "Land Reform"

In Zimbabwe human beings, of White and Coloured ethnicity, were violently dispossessed of their land.
ZANU-PF and its supporters have claimed that this was to reverse what happened under colonialism.
Is this true?
Here is the simple unarguable answer.

  1. It is true that the land was forcefully grabbed by White colonialists in express breach of African Law and Custom. Coloureds were not involved as they were not born.
2. In particular, please note that African Law and Custom NEVER permitted private ownership of land.  Land was always communal.  

3. So the White settlers were wrong to convert communal land to private.
However our Constitution, adopted in 1980, expressly protected private ownership of ALL property, including land.

4. So it changed African Law and Custom. 

5.And please note that the Constitution protected ALL human beings, including the descendants of the colonial settlers and immigrants, not just Black folk. 

6. This means that there could never be any legal grabbing of land. 

7. So the land could only be then grabbed from White owners on MORAL or POLITICAL  grounds, not legal grounds;
... and it is this MORAL/Political justification that is always advanced by the ZANU-PF camp.

8. It is self evidently immoral to grab property from another human being that he/she has acquired lawfully, as with the farm that was grabbed by Rex Nhongo, (Solomon Mujuru) for instance. 

9. Most of the farms that were grabbed were acquired NOT inherited from colonialists … as with my uncle (a Coloured) who went into considerable debt and spent all his life building up the farm and who had been raised excusively by his African Gogo.

10. So too as regards the farm that Mujuru grabbed.

11. What is important to note is that the farms were grabbed and "handed over" for PRIVATE  ownership, and put into PRIVATE  hands.  

12. This proves conclusively that the land grabs were NEVER about reversing the colonial situation!!!!!!   

13. If the intention was to reverse the colonial situation then ALL LAND needed to be returned to COMMUNAL ownership and African Law and Custom restored.  

14. ALL LAND should have be rendered communal and made subject to African Law and Custom.
This has NOT happenned!

15. That ends the moral and/or political claims that have been fed to the masses. 

16. The moral/political justification is a monstrous lie. It is as simple as that.

17 As regards the legal/constitutional/human rights argument, African Judges at the SADC Tribunal had little difficulty is ruling that the land grabs were in breach of common law, our own Constitution and international precepts of human rights.
Other African judges in South Africa have since upheld those findings.  

So whichever way you want to bake it, if you are in possession of a farm that was grabbed, you are in possession of stolen property.  
Legally it has been stolen from the registered owner. Morally, it has been stolen from our own people. 
You are in possession of stolen property. You are in possession of stolen property. You are in possession of stolen property.

No good has come of this. No good will come of this, as the Mujuru family has found out.  So too will you, your children or your children’s’ children discover.

No amount of convenient excuses, obfuscation, political rhetoric, propaganda, spin, jiggle and jive can change this. 

I'm for truth, no matter who tells it.
I'm for justice,
no matter who it's for or against.

Malcolm X


Anonymous said...

you are lying to yourself man.when the black man's land was taken from him no body complained.this makes us more angry racist minded boy.we have to shoot you and kill you.write as many stories we have our stories to write too.

A Wigmore said...

Only cowards hide behind ''anonymous'' and then make vile puerile threats. If you have an informed story to tell then go ahead - but believe enough in yourself and your story to do so under your name.
How else can we respect what you have to say?

dave s said...

Surely if you follow Chris' argument back far enough - there has never been "legal" private ownership of land in any country in the world. If you go back far enough there was no government to set the laws.

At some stage communities made changes from a hunter-gather lifestyle to settled communities. At this point some sort of governance was developed and land ownership developed.

My thinking is that in each case the land was overrun and re-populated often by people from modern-day Europe. However in Africa the gradual movement south by tribes from further north is well documented. Tribes also moved back and forth across the length and breadth of the Americas and Europe.
At some stage it is going to happen again…whether by people out of Asia or elsewhere. It is a cycle that has been perpetuated, and will continue to re-occur, indefinitely.


Chris N Greenland said...

I am taking the issue back to the point that it is relevant to the current situation.

Free counters!