The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Tokwe-Mukosi Dam Construction - Relocations Resume

The relocation of over 500 families to pave way for the construction of Tokwe-Mukosi Dam in Chivi is set to resume after Government and the Development Trust of Zimbabwe agreed on a site in the Nuanetsi Ranch.

There were fears that the relocation of the families might be delayed following a dispute between DTZ and Government over where to resettle the families.

DTZ, which owns the vast Nuanetsi Ranch, donated 68 000 hectares to Government to resettle the affected families.

It then tried to stop the relocations claiming the area had been earmarked for other projects.

Masvingo provincial administrator Mr Felix Chikovo on Wednesday said the relocation would take place soon.

Mr Chikovo said he was optimistic that the relocation would resume so that the families could have time to prepare for the farming season, which has already started in some areas.

"There was a brief stop to the relocation of the over 500 families. But we expect that to begin soon," said Mr Chikovo.

He said each of the affected 500 families would be given 17 hectares for irrigation, dry land farming and grazing pastures for livestock in the Nuanetsi Ranch.

DTZ and the Zimbabwe Bio Energy, which has interests in the Nuanetsi Ranch, have also undertaken to co-finance the pegging of plots to expedite the relocation process.

The over 500 families have to be moved to allow for the construction of the saddle dams.

About US$19 million is required to relocate nearly 4 000 families.

The Tokwe-Mukosi Dam is expected to become Zimbabwe's largest inland water body with a capacity of 1,8 billion cubic metres with a flood area straddling over 9 600 hectares.

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