State to repossess dubiously allocated land

Government says it has started repossessing chunks of land dubiously allocated to so called investors at the expense of Zambians.

Chiefs and Traditional Affairs Minister  Nkandu Luo said this in Mumbwa on Thursday when she visited Chief Kaindu’ s palace in continued search for land to relocate over 1,000 squatters in Mumbwa Game Management Area of the Kafue National Park.

The Minister was shocked to see that Hernan Folly Farm was allocated 2,500 hectares of land on the banks of Kafue River more than the threshold, which Chiefs and Councils can give out.

She said any land more than 250 hectares, needed consent from the President.

Prof. Luo said she would inform President Sata so that the process of reposing land from Hernan Folly Farms commences so that he could only be given 250 hectares.

The Minister warned that government would deal ruthlessly with any one breaking the laws of land allocation whether a traditional leader or a local authority as land was held by the President in trust for Zambians.

Prof. Luo observed that there have been a lot of problems regarding the allocation of Land in Chief Kaindu’s area and directed that the process of land allocation in the Chiefdom must be stopped until all queries regarding the same are resolved.

Meanwhile, only 159 squatters of the Mumbwa game management area out of 1,111 would be relocated to the Kaindu – Chitanda disputed land as it has only 1,000 hectares as opposed to the 11,000 hectares earlier announced.

The minister said the Surveyor General who went on the ground people had already settled on to map the area found that earmarked piece of land and only few spaces were available to relocate the squatters.

The minister added that more land must be sourced from the nearby Chiefs so that more people in the game management area are resettled.

And Chief Kaindu has complained to the minister that he had no land to settle as he was squatting on land owned by the Catholic Church.He said he would not know where to go if the Catholic Church evicted him as the palace was built on the land belonging to the church.

Professor Luo however, said the government is in the process of engaging the Catholic Church so that an alternative land is provided for the Church. – ZANIS