Mazowe – Zimbabwe’s first lady, Dr Grace Mugabe has illegally grabbed a near century old dam between Mazowe and Bindura, cordoning it off, sending hundreds of fishermen packing, Khuluma Afrika can reveal.
The dam, which belonged to Zimbabweans, was a source of both livelhood for several fishermen and their families, as well as a good business hotspot, where several entertainment seekers would hang about.
The dam is an unmissable landmark, which people travelling to see the famous heritage sites in Chinhoyi and Bindura, pass by on their way.
It is the most high profile invasion, just a year before elections and in a month when Robert Mugabe has begun a fresh assault on white farmers and their properties.
As many as 5 productive farms have been siezed and violently, while Mugabe’s praise singer, and youth leader Kudzai Chipanga recently called on all whites to leave the country completely.
Other white farmers have woken up to their properties filled with armed men who effectively told them to drop everything and leave, empty handed, or risk death.
With elections nearing, Mugabe faces a potentially humiliating loss, and is looking to use land invasions as an appeasement tool to Zimbabwean voters. In 2000, he embarked on a similar path, after facing massive internal and external revolt.
While he consolidated voters, he completely annihilated Zimbabwe’s capacity for food production, turning a net exporter of grain and agriculture products into a country heavily reliant on aid.
After driving his country to the brink, Mugabe seemed to have changed tune last year, as he sought assistance from the IMF and the World Bank. His finance Minister stating that the government would compensate all white farmers for their property and land.
His campaign failed flat, with the IMF stating that Zimbabwe, which had cleared its debts with the World Bank, in anticipation of funding, would have to do way much more in terms of reform, before it could be considered for fresh funding.
Cornered, Robert Mugabe has responded by allowing violent land grabs again. But his wife’s siezure of a source of income for many and the few remaining decent spots in the country, demonstrates the level of greed and wealth the first family is burdened by.