More than 80 Chisumbanje villagers from Mutumburi village on Wednesday 21 December 2016 clashed with Green fuel security guards who descended over a piece of communal land the company has earmarked for its expansion project.
The villagers who have over the years used the now disputed piece of land said Green Fuel security guards came aboard two trucks and pounced on villagers threatening them with prosecution for resisting a project which has the backing of the ruling party.
We will not be moved from the land of our forefathers so easily unless they want to kill us. We have been tilling this land since the 1920s”, claimed the village head Titus Mutandani Mutumburi
Farai Dube who was part of villagers chased by security guards appealed to government to be considerate and respect the rights of communal farmers.
“Where is President Mugabe as we are being violently and inhumanely treated by one white man who always chose farming season to frustrate us? We are now at that time where we must defend our right to land despite the consequences” said Farai Dube
Among Chisumbanje villagers’ concerns is the fact that the clashes always start during the farming season which has over the years prejudiced them of good harvests, which the company uses to justify its actions.
Villagers are worried that the company always shows aggression on the onset of the rainy season and this has affected their harvest.Equally worrying is the continuous use of security guards by Green fuel to harass villagers.
The confrontations started in October when villagers tried to stop Green Fuel tractors that were tilling their fields and this led to the deployment of riot police resulting in some traditional leadership being arrested and detained at Chisumbanje Police Station.
more to follow