Land barons run amok in Mabvuku

By Staff Reporter

HARARE – Land barons recently assaulted Harare City Council employees who were allocated stands in Mabvuku.

Land barons went on to confiscate that land despite the employees getting assistance from Harare Metropolitan Police.

According to documents in possession of Business Times, the City Council is failing to regain control of the land.

“The committee expressed concern over disturbances in the allocation of stands in Mabvuku to council employees. The director of housing and Community services reported that employees were allocated stands in Mabvuku. However, when they were supposed to go on the ground the employees were attacked by land barons who were allocating the same land and benefiting without council approval. The Harare Metropolitan Police had tried to assist the team from Housing Allocation Divisions but without success,’’ read part of the memo.

Over the years, unscrupulous land barons have seized control of public lands controlled by the government or city councils, taking advantage of desperate property seekers.

Zimbabwe continues to face a housing backlog resulting in over 1.3m land seekers on the housing waiting list, providing ideal ground for land barons to swindle desperate home searchers out of their hard-earned money.

Harare City Council has been dealing with an increase in unlawful settlements as land barons continue to give out land to house seekers.

Unsuspecting land seekers in Harare have been duped out of their money through illegal land transactions and developers, and their constructions have been dismantled by police.

Political elites have on numerous occasions been pointed as the main culprits of this practice.

The government has for a long time warned land barons who sell State land and threaten them with imprisonment, as it attempts to prohibit the illicit parceling out of land to desperate house seekers.

But most barons are said to be connected to bigwigs hence no serious action is taken against them. – Business Times

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