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End Near for Zimbabwe's Last White Farmers

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Zimbabwean farmers attend a meeting of white commercial farmers in capital Harare.

Zimbabwe’s Supreme Court heard a case on behalf of three farmers who claimed the constitution excluded confiscation of their land because they bought their properties after the colonial era ended with independence in 1980.

The Supreme Court did not agree and quickly dismissed their application.

One of the farmers, Colin Cloete, a former president of the Commercial Farmers’ Union at the height of often violent land invasions seven years ago, was one of the applicants.

He, like many of his colleagues, has been arrested, harassed and appeared in court many times, to try to stay on his farm.

Like most surviving white farmers, the cost of going to court to try to fight his eviction has been unaffordable.

Looking back over the long and difficult years, Cloete, now 58, said his struggle to remain on his farm did not make economic sense.

“Economically we should have moved off then, at the beginning, as we would have been 10 years younger and that much more energetic,” said Cloete.

Cloete said he had begun looking looking for a house in Harare, not least so he could move his possessions to safety.

He said the land invasions launched after Mr. Mugabe lost a referendum in 2000 had hurt him and Zimbabwe’s economy, and no one had benefited from this except the elite in the ZANU-PF Party.

“We are treated like second-class citizens, we are treated like we are still just visitors to this place. My father was born in this country, before Mr. Mugabe, but I am still a visitor,” said Cloete.

Farmer Ken Bartholomew, who was born on his farm, said if he had known what the future held in 2000, after land invasions began, he would have quit farming immediately.

“I would have moved off and done something else, not what I have gone through, with the stress and the amount of finance we have used to fund courts, lawyers. I would have left,”said Bartholomew.

Commercial Farmers’ Union President Deon Theron said the group has warned farmers of their bleak prospects.

“The writing is pretty much on the wall for us. We have been fighting for how many years now to try and continue to try and find a way of dialoguing to resolve the conflict in an amicable way, but all the doors have been closed on us,” Theron said.

Mr. Mugabe and his ZANU-PF Party changed the constitution in 2005 to make all white farms named for acquisition in local newspapers, state property.

Very few evicted white farmers have received compensation for the loss of their homes and businesses on the farms.

Most of Zimbabwe’s top politicians and public servants, including judges, among them those presiding at the Supreme Court are beneficiaries of white-owned farms.

Most farmers say that without dramatic and urgent political change, the only white farmers who will survive in the short term are those who have made private arrangements with district political warlords loyal to ZANU-PF.

The 27-month-old inclusive government, which includes the majority party, the Movement for Democratic Change, has failed to rescue any white farmers from eviction.


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2 Responses to " End Near for Zimbabwe's Last White Farmers "

  1. John Taurus says:

    This is the future of Whites all over the planet. Until we become men and stand up for ourselves, we, our women, and our children will be slaves and second class citizens. Now is the time to move, to stand up for ourselves. Damned the governments and the laws they pass. The laws are chains of enslavement. We whites are in serious trouble and need to organize and strike out.

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    • dennisy says:

      John i agree with u and its these liberal asshole human rights lawyers and politicians pretty much signing into law the extinction of the white race. What really pisses me off is when all races can use fighting for their kind etc and get away with it under the banner as pride to one’s own race but as soon as a white man does it he is called a racist. What really gets to me are these white PC assholes who think putting ur head in the sand will make the problem go away. I live in SA and i always hear from black politicians on TV as how they want to blame colonialists etc for the ill of Africa etc and that they want to limit white/european influence on the continent but when they need money they are quick to come with a begging bowl to the whites first. I see it daily in SA where black think they are entitled to everything. U see a balck guy standing at a traffic light begging for money but u will always see him pass by a black guy driving a fancy car and come to a white guy who may be driving a crappy car for money.

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