By ZBC Reporter
THE conclusion of the Global Compensation Agreement is testimony that the Second Republic is committed to constitutionalism and rule of law as well as bringing finality to the successful land redistribution process.
In 2000, Zimbabwe embarked on a Land Reform programme for the resettlement of citizens on agricultural land. The Government and the former white commercial farmers’ representatives finalised the Global Compensation Deed agreeing that Zimbabwe would pay the ex-farmers US$3,5 billion for improvements, including biological assets and land clearing costs.
In a communique issued yesterday, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube said Government and the former farmers’ representatives had engaged in extensive negotiations over the global compensation figure, leading to the closure of the chapter.
“The conclusion of the Global Compensation Deed (agreement) which was signed in Harare on Wednesday 29 July 2020 is in compliance with the Constitution and Government’s respect for the rule of law.
“It is also a reflection of the Second Republic’s political commitment to the successful conclusion of the land redistribution process in a dignified manner that restores the integrity and dignity of all the people of Zimbabwe who were affected by the necessary land Reform,” he said.
In March 2018, the President constituted an Inter-ministerial Compensation Committee led by Vice President Retired General Dr Constantino Chiwenga.
The committee’s mandate was to give overall policy guidance and direction to the compensation negotiation process and the determination of a global compensation amount.
“Government will continue providing for the payment of interim relief payments in the national budget until sufficient funds for the down payment of the global compensation amount have been raised,” Prof Ncube said.
Speaking to the Herald, Zanu PF acting Secretary for Information and Publicity Cde Patrick Chinamasa said the historic deal was itself a fulfilment of the country’s Constitution.
“The conclusion of the Global Compensation Agreement is therefore in our struggle, a giant step of historic proportions towards the consolidation of the gains of our revolution because it is an acceptance by the white commercial farmers that with respect to compensation for land they should look elsewhere and not to the people of
Zimbabwe nor the Zimbabwe Government. In terms of section 72(7) of our Constitution, the obligations to pay compensation for land was placed squarely on the shoulders of the former colonial power, the British,” Cde Chinamasa said.
Cde Chinamasa emphasised that by agreeing on the amount of compensation for improvements and the time frame for payment and the modalities for raising the resources, Zanu PF wishes it to be known that it no longer considers Commercial Farmers Union and the Southern Commercial Farmers Alliance Zimbabwe to be anti-the land redistribution programme and therefore calls upon the organisations concerned (CFU & SCFAZ) to demand the unconditional lifting of sanctions.
“As we go into the future Zanu PF expects the voice of the two organisations in calling for the unconditional lifting of the sanctions to be loud, clear and unambiguous,” he said.
Cde Chinamasa urged remnants of the splitting MDC to call for the unconditional lifting of sanctions.
The acting spokesperson alluded to the President’s speech in which he said the struggle for independence saw the people taking up arms in order to regain their land and political sovereignty with the land question being one of the tenets of the Lancaster House Conference negotiations.
He said President Mnangagwa was leading the way in adhering to the Constitution particularly Chapter 16, Section 295, subsection 3 (a) that obligates the State to pay compensation for the improvements that were on the land when such land was acquired.