Reuters, July 31
HARARE, Zimbabwe — Zimbabwe will not invite back white farmers whose land was seized by President Robert Mugabe’s government despite calls by the central bank chief to allow them to help the struggling agriculture sector, state media reported.
“The land here is for the black people and we are not going to give it back to anybody. We are not inviting any white farmers back,” Security Minister Didymus Mutasa, also in charge of Lands, Land Reform and Resettlement, told the state-owned Sunday Mail.
Since 2000 Mugabe’s government has seized thousands of white-owned farms after often violent invasions by government-backed veterans of the country’s 1970s struggle against white rule.
But Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon Gono recently urged Mugabe’s government to allow some white farmers back on to the seized farms to help revive an economy near collapse.
Gono has said while some new black farmers were doing well, he was disappointed with the performance of others, adding that the government should allow some of the skilled former white commercial farmers to resume operations in strategic areas such as horticulture.