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Newly appointed chiefs have no power to apportion land

     The Bere throne is one of the chieftaincies revived in recent months

Brighton Chiseva                                              

MASVINGO – Masvingo Provincial Development Coordinator (PDC)
formerly known as Provincial Administrator (PA) Fungai Mbetsa has said
newly-revived chieftainships in formerly white settlements have no power to
distribute land.
Some of the newly-revived
chieftainships in the province are Bere, Nemamwa and Neromwe and Musara.
These chieftainships are in
resettlement areas that were created after the Land Reform Programme displaced
white settler farmers.
Mbetsa said the chieftainships were
there only to uphold cultural values and harmony through solving social and
cultural disputes between people in his area of jurisdiction.
“The Ministry of Lands through
relevant departments is responsible for giving people land and the chief will
only solve disputes among people who were put under his area by the ministry. He
has no power to give land because it is feared the resettlement areas will be turned
into communal areas,” said Mbetsa
He said the chiefs, however, had
power over the selection of village heads and headmen in their area of
jurisdiction. He said the village head and headmen will have similar roles to
play but only at village level.
“The chiefs can appoint village
heads or headmen through the required procedures and they will also bring peace
among their subjects through presiding over domestic disputes in their areas of
jurisdiction,” said Mbetsa.
Chiefs and village heads in many
areas are being reported to be selling land especially those near growth points
and main roads.
Village heads around Nemamwa area
have been accused of doing so and those around Jerera in Zaka are also said to
be selling stands in areas meant for the expansion of the growth point and
efforts by the local authority to stop them seem be failing. 

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