Chief Nhlanhlayamangwe Felix Ndiweni has warned individuals who bought land without following due process in Ntabazinduna that they face eviction.
The chief’s sentiments come after corrupt land deals have become rampant in Ntabazinduna as some villagers who were allocated land by the traditional leadership are reportedly selling the same pieces of land to desperate home seekers in Bulawayo.
Some of the stands or pieces of land are being sold for US$500 depending on the size while in some instances buyers are not given an agreement of sale.
Chief Ndiweni said he had been approached by many people seeking to buy communal land yet that was a wrong practice.
“Selling said land is illegal and those who have done so will be prosecuted, I would especially like to warn the many that have approached me seeking to buy communal land,” he said in a notice regarding the sale and purchase of communal land in Ntabazinduna.
Last week CITE published an expose on how the land was parcelled out to people in Ntabazinduna.
The chief emphasised that communal land is not for sale and if one had already bought land, they would be evicted.
“As the process of eviction has already begun, many have come forward with bogus receipts. Take these receipts to your local police.”
Chief Ndiweni advised individuals who had partaken in this illegal process to make a formal police report stating the amount paid and particulars of the persons who had sold them this land.
“An official Ntabazinduna map exists at the Umguza Rural District Council (RDC) office and all settlements are guided by it. Anything beyond those parameters is illegal and will be destroyed,” he said.
“Due to the outcry (from villagers), the first five people who upon seeing this notice, take these so-called receipts to the police and subsequently the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission will have their ‘stands’ regularised!”
The procedure in acquiring a piece of land in rural areas is one applies to their headman and then goes through the Village Development Committee (VIDCO) with the village secretary, forwarding one’s land request to the councillor and the Chief.
If they all approve, the community is told on such developments and a stand is allocated.
According to the Umguza District Development Coordinator (DDC), Tapiwa Zvivovoyi, land is allocated in line with the Communal Land Act combined with Section 13 of the Constitution.
“This gives the chief power to administer land in line with the existing RDC through the Physical Planning Act, which is the local authority. Ntabazinduna which has old communal lands, the council is in charge of and if the settlement is expected, the council has oversight. There are areas where settlement is done in consultation with the planning authority,” he said.