(NewsPunch) Crisis-torn Zimbabwe is on the brink of “manmade starvation” with most households unable to obtain enough food to meet basic standards, a UN envoy has said.
This comes 17 years after Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwean government seized large swathes of land from white farmers in the country, triggering a rapid downturn in the country’s economy.
“The people of Zimbabwe are slowly getting to a point of suffering a manmade starvation,” said Hilal Elver, the UN special rapporteur on the right to food.
“More than 60% of the population of a country once seen as the breadbasket of Africa is now considered food insecure, with most households unable to obtain enough food to meet basic needs due to hyperinflation,” said Elver.
At least 4,000 white commercial farmers were evicted from their farms.
The land seizures were often violent, claiming the lives of several white farmers during clashes with veterans of Zimbabwe’s 1970s liberation struggle.
Critics of the reforms have blamed the programme for low production on the farms as the majority of the beneficiaries lacked the means and skills to work the land.
The Zimbabwean government’s message to exiled white farmers is now clear. Come back to Zimbabwe and save us.
The nation is offering land leases to white commercial farmers in an effort to re-start the nation’s agricultural industry.