19 November 2012

Zimbabwe: Whitecliff Residents Get Five-Day Ultimatum

Whitecliff residents are unsettled following a Supreme Court order compelling them to vacate the farm within five days to pave way for the legitimate owner Mr Edward Pfugari. Supreme Court judge Justice Vernanda Ziyambi, sitting with Justices Paddington Garwe and Yunus Omerjee, ruled that the disputed land near Kuwadzana Extension belonged to Mr Pfugari of Eddies Pfugari Properties.

The court ordered the Ministry of Local Government, Rural and Urban Development and those occupying the land through it to vacate within five days; the deadline is tomorrow. (Tuesday). Government compulsorily took over Mr Pfugari's farm and allocated it to home seekers. Mr Pfugari unsuccessfully contested the acquisition at the Administrative Court before appealing to the Supreme Court.

Most settlers allocated the land by Government are worried with some pondering their next move. A visit by The Herald to Whitecliff settlements showed that some people had stopped developing their stands because of the uncertainty.

Government built at least 300 houses under Operation Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle in the area, while thousands others were allocated residential stands to build homes on their own.

Development committee chairman for the northern section of Whitecliff, Mr Panas Chingasiye, vowed not to leave the place until Government asks him to go.

"All the people here are in panic. We are living in fear that anything might happen to our properties," he said.

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