HARARE, Zimbabwe (AA) – Former liberation war combatants in Zimbabwe have expressed anger over alleged illegal land sales that benefited President Robert Mugabe’s allies.
During a media briefing held in the capital on Thursday, the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWA) executive, who recently withdrew his support for Mugabe, urged the president to investigate the alleged land sale, which was meant to benefit youths.
“We never benefited from the land sale announced recently, as former liberation war fighters who sacrificed our lives for such benefits but it’s shocking that top government officials in Mugabe’s administration are the ones who illegally bought land meant to benefit the youths and poor,” war veterans said.
The issue came to light recently when Mugabe confronted Local Government Minister Saviour Kasukuwere, accusing him of selling land he had pledged to members of the party’s youth league.
According to a parliamentary report leaked to the media last week, the illegal land deals cheated the intended beneficiaries, i.e. ruling party youths, of 3,000 hectares in Harare.
Most of the beneficiaries of land that was allegedly illegally parceled out are Mugabe allies in the Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU PF) faction dubbed Generation 40 (G40).
The report stated the most senior of the beneficiaries was Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo who allegedly bought 70 hectares of land.
Land is an essential component of the ruling ZANU PF’s campaign each time the country undergoes an election.
There are currently 33,000 veterans in the ZNLWA, according to the association.
Zimbabwe gained its independence in 1980.
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