According to Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube, the Zimbabwean government is engaging international financial institutions and other stakeholders, hoping to mobilise resources to compensate displaced white farmers.
Ncube said the African country’s government had decided to improve on compensation to all former farmers affected by the Land Reform Programme, in accordance with the country’s laws and commitments under the various bilateral agreements. However, he said government does not have the capacity to finance the former farm owners.
“Whilst work on the extent of government’s obligations is still to be finalised, the resources required to compensate and put closure to this important issue is obviously beyond the capacity of the budget to finance,” said Minister Ncube.
The former farmers are reportedly owed some US $9 billion in compensation for improvements made on the farms before the land reform exercise. In this regard, said Minister Ncube, government is engaging international financial institutions and other stakeholders, exploring various sustainable options for gathering the required resources.
In a demonstration of government’s limited capacity, Minister Ncube said Treasury had put aside US $53 million for the exercise. Another option which has been put on the table is to have beneficiaries of the controversial land reform programme to pay compensation to the displaced white farmers.