Disaster looms as villagers resist eviction
from REGERAI PEPUKAI in Masvingo, Zimbabwe
MASVINGO – DEFIANT villagers displaced by floods that hit the Tokwe Mukosi basin last year have relocated to the area vowed to resist attempts by the government to relocate them.
Fears of another disaster with the rainy season now At hand have not deterred them.
“We have returned home and it was not easy,” said a villagers’ spokesman who requested anonymity.
“We know this area is flood prone but it is better to be killed by floods than to be killed by hunger and suffering. We were treated like wild animals by this government and to us we wish if we were in another country.
“We are not going to leave our original homes unless we are paid compensation before we leave,” he added.
The villagers are also counting their losses after some lost their entire herd.
“After losing some of the things to the floods we later lost all what was left at the holding camp where were temporarily sheltered,” said Muchineripi Mawoyo.
Masvingo Provincial Administrator, Felix Chikovo, confirmed some people had returned to their homes but could not provide figures.
He however said that those who accepted the government offer were given plots in the Nuanetsi Ranch where they are currently staying.
“We have heard that some people have returned to their homes and we are yet to verify, but the government position is clear that those who reoccupied the dam basin would be removed again,” said Chikovo.
The cash-strapped government has largely failed to compensate the flood victims.
Some of the victims now staying in Nuanetsi Ranch recently received part of their compensation after the government secured US$ 2 million of the required $ 9 million to compensate the flood victims.
– CAJ News
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