Zimbabwe Eyes Food Security Amid Drought

Madalitso Mwando, Al Jazeera, April 16, 2013

Sibangani Ngwenya raises his arm to show how tall his maize should be standing in a normal March, but a lack of rain means his crop will be a write-off this year.

“There is no water as you can see. This crop should be about this size,” said the 55-year-old subsistence farmer in Lower Gweru in Zimbabwe’s Midlands Province.

Here rains have been erratic, as in many parts of the country, exposing the need for new ways to help rural farming communities access enough water and produce enough food.

The UN World Food Programme (WFP) estimates that up to 1.6 million Zimbabweans require aid this year after poor harvests left subsistence farmers short of food for their families.

The government has long touted irrigation schemes as key infrastructure that could boost agricultural production. But financing such projects has been tough since Zimbabwe’s chaotic land reform programme, which began in 2000, pushed many banks to withdraw support for agricultural activities.

According to the Commercial Farmers Union (CFU), land seizures under the programme led to a rapid decline in farming as the new owners had little or no expertise. Some were dubbed “cell phone farmers” as, unlike the former white landowners, they did not live on the land but in cities, keeping in touch with their farm managers by phone.

Food production plunged in that period, from 2 million tonnes of maize in 2000 to 400,000 in 2010according to the CFU, which represents mainly white farmers.

Now, as the farm sector starts out on the arduous road to recovery amid shifting climate patterns, the government is planning to support its revival by crafting new legislation on irrigation.


As Zimbabwe attempts to regain its position as a net food exporter in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), legislation on irrigation could be a first step towards realising that goal.

But government engineer Tsoka said any new irrigation policy must address sources of funding for developing and maintaining irrigation schemes. He raised concerns about the lack of participation by private finance and multilateral finance institutions.

Many consider agriculture a risky investment, especially given ongoing reports of land takeovers by supporters of President Robert Mugabe. Analysts say this has spooked investors, who have turned to other sectors of the economy like mining.


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  • 48224

    “Maize production is down 80 percent since the government seized white-owned farms.”
    In other news, crime is up 8,000 percent.

    • JackKrak

      Don’t worry – I think Zimbabweans are eligible for American food stamps. Everyone else seems to be…..

      • Michael_C_Scott

        Everybody except me. When I applied for food stamps in late 2009, I was denied because I own my own home. My attempts to point out that these programs are intended in part to keep people from losing their homes cut no mustard. Likewise, my attempts to secure temporary SSDI disability after what was either a mild stroke or a severe TIA in 2006 were fruitless. In light of these experiences, my suspicion that Oogaboogacare will do absolutely nothing for me should be completely understandable.

  • Schadenfreude

    Call me heartless, but I have neither sympathy nor pity for the black Zimbabweans’ predicament. They were envious of white Zimbabweans’ success and work ethic, so they took over their farms and businesses. The result: mass incompetence and subsequent failure, and the nation down spiraled into an economic abyss.
    I say serves them right.

    • Oil Can Harry

      Zimbabwe = South Africa in 20 years.

      And the US by century’s end.

    • So CAL Snowman

      Yeah but Jimmy Carter and Andrew Young made sure that Zimbabwe would not have a peaceful transition to majority black rule with Whites maintaining a sizable portion of the government. Instead Jimmy Carter and Andrew young made sure that Mugabe and his thugs would take over the country. The US congress was ready to recognize the new transitional government in 1979 (without Mugabe) but Jimmy Carter over ruled them because Mugabe and his thugs were largely shut out of the election. The next year (1980) Mugabe and his thugs (with the full backing of Jimmy Carter) “won” the elections and the rest is history.

      • rebelcelt

        If Jimmy Carter is for it , it is ?was a stupid idea? The only thing consistent with him was absolute failure.

      • eavesmac

        Peanut farmer………

    • professor

      ….”lack of participation by private finance and multilateral finance institutions.” Surely engineer Tsoka is referring to the many black institutions available to the local economy.

      • Michael_C_Scott

        This quaintly-put “lack of participation” is due to the fact that property in Zimbabwe is subject to arbitrary confiscation. A nation wanting to attract investment would prosecute this as theft, but they have different priorities in Zimbabwe.

  • But…but…
    Wha hoppin to that $50,000,000 that Dubya Bush promised to Africa?

    • JohnEngelman

      It went into the bank accounts of the local dictators.

      • josh

        Foreign Aid:Poor people in rich countries having their hard earned dollars going to rich people in poor countries. hey,f*ck the Zimboobeans.Let em starve.

  • Zimbabwe used to have food security. Think about it.

  • bigone4u

    If Zimbababbleweans can build an irrigation system and keep it running, I’ll have to kill myself. And I’m not the suicidal type.

    • rebelcelt

      I think you”ll live.

    • MBlanc46

      The Chinese might do it for them.

      • bigone4u

        Or white libs infected with that old white guilt thing. If the Chinese do it, I doubt it will be viewed as charity. I also doubt the Chinese will tolerate TNB.

        • MBlanc46

          The Chinese might actually restore order to the place. On the other hand, it would likely give China some strategic advantages I’d rather they not have.

    • Michael_C_Scott

      They dug up the irrigation pipes to sell them.

      • Luis

        Here’s an idea: Why doesn’t the Peace Corps entice thousands of white American college students to go forth and teach Zimbabwe how to dig water wells, and grow their own crops? After all, most of these same students voted for Obama. And it worked for John F. Kennedy, who founded the whole thing.
        Michael C., have you seen that Peace Corps commercial featuring some nerdy white milquetoast talking about his time in the South American tropics? About how he couldn’t wait to leave after his first month, and then after 6 months, he didn’t WANT to leave? The first time I saw that commercial, I simply shook my head.
        Why don’t they ever show American Bantus in the Peace Corps, working in some village on the mother continent? Or, is there as much chance of that happening as seeing unicorns fly?

    • Morris LeChat

      They can’t. We are talking about negros here. They may lay some irrigation lines, but those lines will be dig up and sold on the market as scrap metal, probably the very next day. Negroes are genetically corrupt. They can not manage anything . They can only take and beg.

  • E_Pluribus_Pluribus

    A powerful two-minute video on the utter folly of the arrogant, stupid left-liberal white elites of the western countries, who in the 70s and 80s, transformed prosperous Rhodesia into squalid Zimbabwe:

    “Ian Smith dies aged 88″ (2 min, 21 sec. video summary

    BBC, November 20, 2007



    BBC: “Ian Smith believed Africans could never run their own countries. He went to his grave convinced he was right.”

    “In the 1960s, Ian Smith, as Rhodesia’s prime minister, defied the winds of change bringing independence and black rule to Britain’s colonies. White Rhodesians wanted independence from Britain but without handing power to the black majority. This was unacceptable in Britain. Harold Wilson’s Labour government was plunged into its first real crisis . . .Talks went nowhere. Ian Smith rebelled and in November, 1965, he made his unilateral Declaration of Independence . . . The British [eventually] dismissed Smith and his cabinet, but the [now] illegal regime carried on and didn’t seem to care much.”

    SMITH: “I don’t believe in black majority rule EVER in Rhodesia, not in a thousand years.”

    BBC: “It was black-armed opposition which eventually forced change . . . Robert Mugabe emerged as the new leader. But now, 27 years after independence, President Mugabe has reduced Zimbabwe to ruin, its agricultural riches destroyed, food in desperately short supply, with hyper-inflation running out of control and any and all political opposition met by violence and repression. Ian Smith felt vindicated.”

    SMITH: “Standard of education and health and housing for our black people of any other country in the African continent. That was what Rhodesians did, and I wonder if we shouldn’t be given credit for doing that.”

    BBC: “But the world did not tolerate Ian Smith’s rebellion to prevent black majority rule. He lived his life out of step with the times…”

  • dhs

    The crops be rasiss, and be on hatin’ black people.

  • Secret Tribunal

    White privileged farmers who don’t grow enough food to feed blacks are obvious hate criminals.

  • Reparations now

    Whites should pay billions to the black Zimbabweans so they can learn how to use technology to grow food. After having pillaged their land for hundreds of years, whites need to pay.

    • Bobbala

      You can’t fix stupid.

    • rebelcelt

      Yeah , that has worked where?

      • Michael_C_Scott

        The only reparations we whites owe Africa is to give them their negroes back. I’ll quit working before I pay taxes to provide reparations… wait a minute – I already DID quit working; this particular white ATM is now out of order.

  • Phineas

    but the white man made it look so easy!

  • The__Bobster

    As Zimbabwe attempts to regain its position as a net food exporter in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), legislation on irrigation could be a first step towards realising that goal.

    Exporter? Really? Are they going to bring back YT and return his farms to him? Well, return the farms to those YT’s that are still alive.

    • GeneticsareDestiny

      Zimbabwe will never export a single truckload of maize until they bring back white farmers. But rather than do the intelligent thing, they’ll starve to death, victims of their own low IQs and corrupt politicians.

  • Does Zimbabwe have food deserts like we have here in Chicago?

    • josh

      Good one,young man! It IS a food desert!

    • MBlanc46

      Ah, they’ve got a Harold’s Chicken Shack on every corner. If the hood rats wanted Whole Foods stores, they’d have them. It’s preference.

      • In white areas, they’re called Whole Paycheck.

        If there were any in the ghetto, they would be called Whole Welfare Check.

        • MBlanc46

          Not cheap, that’s for sure. I just used the name because it’s one that most people know. I meant any place that has fresh food and produce.

          • Cheap nuts and seeds. Hate going there because of the hoity-toity black women I might have to maneuver around to get out.

          • MBlanc46

            Fortunately, few blacks at the ones I shop at.

  • StillModerated

    So, Southern Rhodesia was effed up by guilty White liberals. I say let the liberals fix the problem they caused, and then walked away from. After all, who knows farming better than history professors?

  • APaige

    White farmers fed that nation and grew surplus that was sold to other African nations. Blacks murder white farmers, take over the farms, the people starve and blame is placed on rain? (not smart enough for irrigation systems?) Well I guess that is better than blaming the white farmers for being murdered.

    • Michael_C_Scott

      They also slaughtered and ate productive dairy cows.

  • MBlanc46

    Blacks lived for centuries as subsistence agriculturalists. The best thing that could happen in sub-Saharan Africa would be for them to resume subsistence agriculture.

    • hastings88

      This would require a population crash, which is acceptable.

      • MBlanc46

        Absolutely. But the result would probably be more or less sustainable.

  • LHathaway

    speaking of Al Jazeera, the news source here, and AIDS, in a previous article, what is the infection rate of this disease in the Mideast?

    • StillModerated

      This website is full of interesting facts and figures:


    • StillModerated


      It’s not as high as Africa, but 1% and rising.

      • Michael_C_Scott

        I think it is because homosexuality isn’t even in the closet there yet, let alone out of it, which would put the kibosh on any discussion of risk mitigation. There’s also the propensity for wealthy Arab men to boink their southeast Asian housemaids; a decidedly unsafe and unhealthy practice.

  • Robert L. Thomas

    Blacks would rather die of starvation than admit that whites are superior.

    • NeanderthalDNA

      Sounds good to me.

      Gibsmedat o I gonna starve!

      Quarantine that hellhole and let Mr. Malthus’s theory work as it does for any lower beast incapable of planning for the future and delaying gratification..

      • NeanderthalDNA

        ” My next effort was to procure laborers, for whom I invoked the aid of Fana-Foro and the neighboring chiefs. During two days, forty negroes, whom I hired for their food and a, per diem of twenty cents, wrote faithfully under my direction ; but the constant task of felling trees, digging roots, and cleaving ground was so unusual for savages, that the entire gang, with the exception of a dozen, took their pay in rum and tobacco, and quitted me. A couple of days more devoted to such endurance drove off the remaining twelve, so that on the fifth day of my philanthropic enterprise I was left in my solitary hut with a single attendant. I had, alas ! undertaken a task altogether unsuited to people whose idea of earthly happiness and duty is divided between palm oil, concubinage, and sunshine. I found it idle to remonstrate with the king about the indolence of his subjects. Fana-Toro entertained very nearly the same opinion as his slaves. He declared and perhaps very sensibly that white men were fools to work from sunrise to sunset every day of their lives ; nor could he comprehend how negroes were expected to follow their example; nay, it was not the ‘ fashion of Africa;’ and, least of all, could his majesty conceive how a man possessed of so much merchandise and property, would voluntarily undergo the toils I was preparing for the future. . . . For a while I tried the effect ofhigher wages ; but an increase of rum, tobacco, and coin, could not string the nerves or cord the muscles of Africa. Four men’s labor was not equivalent to one day’s work in Europe or America. The negro’s philosophy was both natural and self-evident: why should he work for pay when he could live without it ?

        “Canof’s Twenty Years of an African Slaver, page 417.

        Hinton R. Helper’s “Of the Negroes in Negroland”

        Good luck with becoming an exporter of anything other than misery and disease, kaffirs. Oh, and eternal parasitism.

  • me

    You reap what you sow….literally!

  • haroldcrews

    If I understand correctly Africans are incapable of digging their own wells. If I’m mistaken and they are why are non-profits digging the wells for them. Therefore I don’t hold out much hope for them in creating and maintaining an irrigation system. It’s just another scheme to raise capital then to fritter it away or steal it. You can’t fight genetics.

    • Ned

      They are too lazy to dig wells, they rather die of thirst than actually have to work.
      Besides, stupid do gooder white charities dig wells for them free of charge so blacks don’t have to lift a finger.

  • This is an interesting prophecy! In it the nations of the Earth will need to acknowledge the God of Israel and His People. I’m of the “Identity” category. My studies show that the Caucasians of the world are The Lost Sheep of the House of Israel, not the Jews as a whole.

    As time moves into the future this is what happens to the rebellious nations who resist. This lesson will be learned and it is the nations only hope for peace and security. I’m not nuts (according to me).

    16 “And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. 17And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. 18And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. 19This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.”
    At this point I’m not sure as to what or how this “keep the feast of tabernacles” actually works, but I do know that “resistance is futile”.

  • “1.6 million need aid”…well too bad. There is no reason why Zimbabwe has hunger. Just like our black population, the more you feed them, the more they eat. Some long term hunger will result in them looking for a long term solution. Feeding them just prolongs the problem.

  • ex South African
  • Morris LeChat

    I’ve read that the first thing the blacks did when given the farms of the whites was that they dug up the irrigation pipes and sold the metals. Now the dull chimps , after many years, have come to the conclusion that irr’gayshun beez ihm-poh-tint!”. The article mentions a black farmer and calls him a “subsistence” farmer, and guess what, he can’t even produce at a subsistence level. Meanwhile, the remaining 400,00tons of grain is all coming from the remaining white farms. it is time to airlift all of the whites that are left there out, let the country fail, completely, let the blacks disappear from starvation. At this point I’d say that the way to handle the white farmer that wants to stay is to execute him as a traitor that is helping the enemy hang on a little longer. When one has gangrene one amputates.

  • anarchyst

    It’s long overdue to repeal ALL so-called “civil-rights (for some)” laws. All civil-rights (for some)” laws have done is destroy freedom of association and have made white males “third-class” citizens.
    Every ethnic group has organizations that exclude all others–except whites. As whites, we are not permitted to form institutions that promote our own interests–“civil-rights (for some)” laws do not permit it.
    A backlash is coming–it won’t be pretty, but is necessary. The best thing that could happen would be for all whites (white liberals excluded) to “go Galt” (look it up). When the economic engine grinds to a halt, the other “preferred” races will see what is happening when whites decide not to “go along”.
    A prime example of white genocide is taking place in Zimbabwe and South Africa. Once, the “breadbaskets” of the African continent, these two countries are being destroyed by black-rule. White farmers have been dispossessed of their land and are living in what amounts to “refugee camps” in their own country. So-called “affirmative action” rules exclude whites from ALL government positions.
    The same situation exists here in the USA–Small Business Administration (SBA) loans are not available for white-owned businesses. It helps to have a minority female (a two-fer) apply for an SBA loan. Being of foreign extraction also helps (a three-fer).
    Our esteemed “attorney-general” eric holder has declared that “civil-rights (for some)” laws and “protections” DO NOT APPLY TO WHITES. Google Channon and Newsome murders to see how “civil-rights (for some)” laws work against white Americans.
    Us whites have been effectively disenfranchised in our own country THAT WE BUILT.
    The U S government will not accord “refugee status” to any African whites, despite clear evidence of persecution in their home countries. Of course, our government welcomes black somalian savages (and others) with open arms.

    • Morris LeChat

      HELL YEAH!

  • nobody

    Africa logic…

    Oh, hey, let’s steal these evil white farmers land
    Get out of our motherland crackers we hate you so much omg
    power to the people, no justice no peace lol
    ….. oh noes we are starving! The whites are rayciss for leaving us to starve!

  • Luis

    Let a hundred flowers bloom on Zimbabwe’s grave. Let a hundred jackals contest over her remains.