In a notice by the Minister of Lands and Rural Resettlement, Herbert Murerwa, published in the state press, Mugabe used his Presidential Powers to compulsorily acquire land in Harare for urban development.
The land had been acquired from the Zimbabwe Tobacco Association (ZTA), Jetmaster Properties and Pinnacle holdings, owned by Chiyangwa.
Part of the notice read: “Notice is hereby given in terms of section 8 (1) of the Land Acquisition Act (Chapter 20: 10), that the President has acquired compulsorily the land described in the schedule.”
“Deed of transfer 5021/07 , registered in the name of Pinnacle holdings (private) limited, in respect of land situate in the district of Salisbury, being The Remainder of Subdivision A of Stoneridge, measuring five hundred and eighty six comma eight nine six zero (586,8690) hectares.
The notice also said the government has also acquired 605 hectares from ZTA while 193 hectares were taken from Jetmasters.
A councillor who is privy to what is happening told Radio VOP that the land that was compulsorily acquired by Mugabe was actually in dispute between the residents of Harare South who were fighting court battles to resist eviction that was being sought by Pinnacle, Jetmasters and ZTA.
“The land that was acquired by the President was in dispute between the residents and Pinnacle. Pinnacle was claiming ownership but if it had succeeded that will have meant that Harare South constituency would have ceased to exist and this did not go down with Zanu (PF),” the councillor said on condition of anonymity.
“As you are aware that Hubert Nyanhongo is the only Zanu (PF) parliamentarian in Harare province.This was done just to keep the constituency and please the residents of Harare South who got their stands through Zanu (PF).”
The city of Harare wrote a report this year which said Chiyangwa used unprocedural methods to acquire vast land in around the capital, but the police had been reluctant to pursue the case although the council made a formal report.
Councillors who wrote the report have been arrested and are appearing in court over the report.