Lands com­mit­tee pub­lic hear­ings start

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Pamela Shumba Se­nior Re­porter

THE Parliamentary Port­fo­lio Com­mit­tee on Lands, Agri­cul­ture and Ir­ri­ga­tion De­vel­op­ment yes­ter­day started hold­ing pub­lic hear­ings on the Land Com­mis­sion Bill, as the coun­try moves to­wards weed­ing out mul­ti­ple farm own­ers.

The Clerk of Par­lia­ment, Mr Kennedy Chokuda, said the pub­lic hear­ings on the Bill would move to Bu­l­awayo on Thurs­day.

“The Port­fo­lio Com­mit­tee on Lands, Agri­cul­ture and Ir­ri­ga­tion De­vel­op­ment will hold pub­lic hear­ings on the Land Com­mis­sion Bill from Au­gust 1 to 6. The com­mit­tees will be di­vided into two groups and will cover var­i­ous ar­eas,” said Mr Chokuda in a state­ment.

Ac­cord­ing to the sched­ule, the first team started in Harare at Par­lia­ment’s Se­nate Cham­ber and is ex­pected to be at the Ban­ket Sports Club to­day. The team will pro­ceed to Vungu Ru­ral District Coun­cil in Gweru to­mor­row.

On Thurs­day, the hear­ings will be held at Iminyela Hall in Bu­l­awayo.

On Fri­day, the team will be at Matetsi Hall in Hwange. Their last pub­lic hear­ing will be at Mz­ing­wane Farm­ers Hall in Umz­ing­wane District.

The sec­ond team is ex­pected to be at Dan­dam­era Hall to­day be­fore pro­ceed­ing to Wedza Ru­ral District Coun­cil to­mor­row.

On Thurs­day the team will be at Beit Hall in Dangamvura sub­urb, Mutare be­fore its last hear­ing at Masvingo Hall in Masvingo.

Mr Chokuda urged mem­bers of the pub­lic to at­tend the hear­ings but warned them against wear­ing po­lit­i­cal party re­galia at the meet­ings.

“The pub­lic, in­ter­ested groups and or­gan­i­sa­tions are in­vited to at­tend these hear­ings. Please note that per­sons wear­ing mil­i­tary uni­forms, signs of ranks, flags or badges and po­lit­i­cal re­galia will not have ac­cess to the pub­lic hear­ings,” said Mr Chokuda.

He said writ­ten sub­mis­sions could also be sent to Par­lia­ment.

In terms of Sec­tion 297 of the Con­sti­tu­tion, the land com­mis­sion will con­duct pe­ri­odic au­dits of agri­cul­tural land, in­ves­ti­gate as well as deter­mine complaints and dis­putes re­gard­ing the su­per­vi­sion, ad­min­is­tra­tion and al­lo­ca­tion of agri­cul­tural land.

More than 400,000 fam­i­lies ben­e­fited from the agrar­ian re­form pro­gramme which gave landless black peo­ple a chance to own land.

Re­cently, Pres­i­dent Mu­gabe warned farm­ers, es­pe­cially A2 farm­ers, that those tak­ing land as a sta­tus sym­bol would lose it.

The Gov­ern­ment’s pol­icy also does not al­low mul­ti­ple land own­er­ship, but seeks to pro­mote the one-fam­i­ly­one-farm frame­work.

@pame­lashumba1

Mr Kennedy Chokuda

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