South Africa’s agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat- Pettersson is spearheading a new drive to settle white farmers from South Africa throughout the African continent — partly because SA’s redistribution programme will create land shortages at home.
Zambia is an immediate target for occupation.
Joemat-Pettersson said at the annual congress of farmers’ union AgriSA on Friday that the government remained committed to transferring 30% of white-owned farmland to blacks in five years, but this would leave little room for white farmers to expand in SA.
“If we can’t find opportunities for white South African farmers in this country, we must do it elsewhere in the continent.”
She continued: “We cannot have a repeat of what happened to our farmers in Zimbabwe.
Zambia is one of the five countries South Africa is targeting to acquire land immediattelly. Others are Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan, Angola and Uganda. Angola has offered two farms totalling 140000ha in a prime production area, and Uganda 170000ha near Kampala.
But which land will Zambia give?
The Zambian government is yet to issue a statement but South African media indicate that SA white farmers want one of the multi Facility economic zones which the Zambian governmental has been preaching about.
And the Zambian government appears to be in a sudden hurry to complete development in the so called Multi Facility Economic Zone ( MFEZ )
The government has set aside K 20 billion in the 2010 national budget for the completion of infrastructure development at the Lusaka South Multi Facility Economic Zone ( MFEZ ).
Speaking when he presented the 2010 national budget in Lusaka last Friday, Finance and National Planning Minister, Situmbeko Musokotwane, said the growth of the manufacturing sector is an essential part of the government’s agenda for national development and that expanding the manufacturing activities will, over the medium term, improve the country’s growth prospects and competitiveness.
“We will sign state-to-state agreements confirmed in international courts so you are guaranteed your land will not be taken away from you,” the minister told congress delegates.