Claim: A Twitter user @Jonesmusara claimed that Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader announced that he will reverse the land reform programme and give the land back to its former owners.
“By announcing his anti-land reform and anti-Zimbabwe agenda yesterday Chamisa has just scored latest own-goal which has cemented his place among losers of the 23 August election. Indeed Chakaruza Chinhu Chake(CCC),” read the tweet.
Embedded in the tweet was a 10-second clip of Chamisa addressing a rally in Gweru which has been trending on social media to cement his claim.
What did Chamisa say about land issue and its context?
Addressing the rally in Gweru on 16 July 2023, Chamisa, who was speaking in the local language Shona spoke about two issues, the land issue and natural resources.
He said when gets into power he will provide title deeds for people in Chilonga, Dinde and Mutoko.
“I was in Chilonga in Chiredzi and they appealed to me that once I am voted into power, they want their land returned to them. I assured them that once I assume power, no one will be evicted from their land. Land to the people, and title deeds to the people. We don’t want our people to live like they are in exile,” said Chamisa.
He added, “There are reports that If I’m voted into power I will repossess all the farms. That is not the case, do not be fooled. When I assume power, I will give landholders title deeds and not party cards that you are using as title deeds.”
Chamisa said villagers have the right to own land and to benefit from natural resources found in those areas.
“You have a right to own land. Not what is happening in Chilonga, Dinde and Mutoko where natural resources are being allocated to foreigners and the locals are not benefitting. They are told the land does not belong to them and is reserved land, meaning it is reserved for others. We want to correct that, resources for everyone, land for everyone….People should be afforded opportunities and dignity in their own country.
He emphasised that villagers in these areas who have been removed from their land to make way for foreigners should be given back their land
“The land issue is very critical, everyone who was removed from their land should be reinstated. We will start from there.”
On mining, Chamisa said if CCC gets into power natural resources will not be exported in their raw state.
“We won’t say lithium from Bikita minerals will be taken as raw material, no one will take our land in raw materials, beneficiation, value addition, create jobs, factories, you won’t take jobs outside the country,” he said.
If said if CCC gets into power, it will restore the dignity of artisanal miners.
“If you look at all countries, they want lithium because they want lithium batteries because of electric cars, we can’t take our oil, gold, lithium, look at the gold mafia, makorokoza you are told that you will be removed by Chamisa, No, we come to dignify your work artisanal miners because you are the ones digging the important land, not the system of saying do you have party card, have you paid the tithe to the party,” he said.
Chamisa added, “You won’t be paying tithe to the party, you have paid tithe to God that is enough, we don’t want partisan politics.
Villagers in three areas which were named by Nelson Chamisa to give title deeds have been living in fear facing evictions.
Villagers in Chilonga, Chiredzi, and Masvingo Districts faced displacement from their ancestral land following government plans to make way for a Lucerne farm, a commercial irrigation venture.
In Dinde village, Hwange District, Matabeleland North province, families faced eviction from their ancestral homes to pave the way for a Chinese mining company. The company, Baifer Investment, was exploring coal in Dinde areas.
Meanwhile, villagers in three Mutoko villages also faced eviction from their ancestral land after a Chinese company attempted to annex the area under a planned lithium venture.
The circulating clip is misleading. It was taken out of context to create the impression that the CCC leader seeks to reverse the land reform programme if he assumes state power.