WORKERS at former Local Government minister and ex-Zanu PF national commissar Saviour Kasukuwere's Concorpia Farm in Mazowe face a bleak future following government's move to seize the property, one of the few remaining productive farms in the country.
Government last week wrote to Kasukuwere, through Lands minister Perrance Shiri, withdrawing its offer for the land, ostensibly for planning purposes.
lf government has its way, more than 100 permanent workers and over 300 contract workers will be affected.
"We have about 100 permanent workers and the figure fluctuates on seasonal workers, but sometimes we go to about 300," farm manager Shepherd Siyanganga told The Standard yesterday.
On production, Siyanganga said: "We have seed maize which is on about 40 hectares. We also have 45 hectares of seed soya. There is also commercial maize which is on about 45 hectares as well."
Siyanganga said there were also 25 hectares of commercial soya.
"We have 124 hectares for citrus, then we have outcrop, hills and streams covering 80 hectares and the rest is for cattle grazing," he said.
Workers yesterday said most of them knew no other home as they were originally from Mozambique and their families remained worried over their future. There is also a school, Mazowe Citrus Secondary School.
Workers also spoke glowingly about their working relationship with Kasukuwere. Kasukuwere yesterday said he would present a strong case to Shiri on the developments at the farm. He said there was nothing to warrant the treatment he was getting.
"We will put our case to the minister in terms of what we are doing. We are doing cultivation on 120 hectares on land which we opened ourselves. It initially just had citrus only, but we invested on centre pivots, opened land for irrigation and brought in the water," Kasukuwere said.
"We did a lot and borrowed from financial companies. There were only two houses for workers and we have now built more to cater for more than 100 workers. The farm was just a small part of the estate and no one was using it."
Shiri last week wrote to Kasukuwere saying: "Notice of intention to withdraw land offer under the land reform and resettlement programme (model A2, Phase 2).
Notice is hereby given that the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement intends to withdraw the offer of land made to you in respect of subdivision whole measuring 556.617ha of R/E of Concorpia Farm in the District of Mazowe in Mashonaland Central province.
"The reasons for the withdrawal are for downsizing for planning purposes. You are invited to make any representations you may have in this matter in writing within seven days of receipt of this notification. All correspondence in this regard should be directed to the Minister," the letter read in part.
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