Zim farmers say abuses worsen

By Branko Brkic 1 October 2009

Zimbabwe farmers say that violence is worsening, at the same time that a report by government and donors shows that compensation has only been paid for about three percent of 6,500 white-owned farms seized by Robert Mugabe. The farmers say the rule of law is non-existent, causing enormous disruption to food production. Government has claimed the maize crop is double last year’s harvest, but farmers say it has dropped to 396,250 tonnes in 2009 from 417,000 tonnes in 2008, largely due to farm violence. The power-sharing government formed by Mugabe and rival Morgan Tsvangirai is accused of failing to clamp down on rights abuses in the country. The blame lies squarely with Mugabe though, who recently called the unity government “this creature”, indicating that he has no desire to reign in land grabs that have drastically reduced the area under cultivation by 50,000 hectares.

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