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Conservancy invasion saga drags on
Moyo, The Independent Zimbabwe
November 01, 2013
including foreign investors and the local community are still waiting
for the new government to come up with a resolution to the long-running
Save Conservancy saga, a year after the wild-life-rich conservancy
was invaded by Zanu-PF bigwigs.
who spoke to the Zimbabwe Independent this week said the dispute
between invaders and conservancy owners was still to be resolved.
is the richest and largest private wildlife sanctuary in the world.
It hit the headlines last year after on invasion by Zanu-PF heavyweights,
particularly from Masvingo province.
out the conservancy among themselves before embarking on an orgy
of wildlife hunting, sparking local and international outrage.
team led by then deputy prime minister Arthur Mutambara was established
last year during the tenure of the inclusive
government to investigate the matter and present recommendations
to cabinet, but failed to deliver.
general manager David Goosen, who met the Mutambara team twice in
November, said a speedy resolution to the dispute was dashed by
the election campaigns ahead
of the July 31 polls and the subsequent change of ministers
after the polls.
know there were elections and now there’s a new minister,”
Goosen said. “We are setting up meetings with the new minister
(Saviour Kasukuwere) and we are still positive that a workable win-win
situation for everybody will be realised.”
of a business model in which the conservancy owners could get into
partnership with the local community, adding that there is need
to balance “government’s desire for indigenisation against
the need to attract and retain foreign investors, as well as ensuring
local communities benefit from the proceeds of conservancies in
their areas, in addition to ensuring sustainable conservation of
the conservancy to be run as a company and the local community will
have shares in a trust represented by their chiefs,” said
phone went unanswered on Wednesday, while Tourism and Hospitality
Industry minister Walter Mzembi did not return the Zimbabwe Independent’s
call as promised.
has in the past spoken strongly against the invasion of Save Conservancy.
he alluded to government’s failure to resolve the Save issue,
describing wildlife and conservancy issues as a “supercritical
governance problem where the government still has to provide its
people with solutions and answers.”
issue is part of our outstanding business from the previous government
that we are rolling over and unless we address that we will continue
having problems,” Mzembi said.
with Goosen, saying the country should be looking at crafting policies
to turn more of Zimbabwe’s arid areas in natural farming regions
four and five into conservancies.
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