Chiredzi — SOME 25 government officials sacked from their farms southeast of Zimbabwe in 2007 have grabbed their properties back.
They had lost ownership of the farm under the administration of Robert Mugabe but are back in the properties as President Emerson Mnangagwa bows down to pressure from his colleagues in the ruling ZANU-PF party.
They had been booted out of the Save Valley conservancies, a key tourism destination in the Southern African country.
Mugabe had revoked the takeover of the sanctuary claiming that the property was protected by bilateral agreements.
The Mnangagwa administration has since given a green light for the beneficiaries to reclaim their lease agreements and subsequently being issued with hunting licences.
"We are not re-invading the sanctuary but we are just formalizing everything now under the new dispensation," said former Masvingo provincial affairs minister, Josaya Hungwe
Prisca Mupfumira, Tourism and Hospitality minister, said that her ministry had appproved the beneficiaries to reclaim their lease agreements.
"The lease agreements were cancelled in 2007 but we have seen it fit for the beneficiaries to get back their plots and engage in wildlife projects. We cannot have a business or project in the country which is reserved for one race. That is unacceptable," Mupfumira said.