Zim Deputy Premier Apologises For Murambatsvina

She said the government was guilty of treating people inhumanely.

Addressing scores of Hopley Farm residents on the outskirts of Harare on Wednesday, Khupe said the clean up operation had given the government bitter lessons for the future.

“I would like to apologise for the way you were resettled here, next time we will make ensure that there is adequate infrastructure before resettling them,” she said.

About 5 000 people were resettled at the farm in the aftermath of Operation Murambatsvina, which saw more than 750 000 rendered homeless, while others lost their livelihoods.

Khupe said the government will be proactive in future and ensure that infrastructure is built for residents of Hopley and other resettlement areas.

She said the government would start by building clinics and schools in Hopley Farm for the residents, whom she said were suffering two fold, first they were evicted and then they now they lacked basic necessities.

Khupe’s visit to the farm follows a report by Amnesty International that revealed 21 newly born babies had died in the squatter camp.

“No woman should die while giving birth, so maternity fees here in Hopley have been waived so that every woman can receive basic health care,” she said.

The Amnesty International report urged the government to step in immediately to investigate the deaths.

Michelle Kagari, the organisation’s deputy director for Africa, said the government had neglected Hopley Farm after resettling people there in the aftermath of Operation Murambatsvina.