African Development Bank (AfDB) has announced its commitment to assist in raising $3.5 billion for compensating white Zimbabwean farmers who lost their land and assets during the controversial land reform program.
AfDB President Akinwumi Adesina revealed the bank’s plan during a press conference held in Harare, emphasizing the need to utilize financial tools that would avoid worsening Zimbabwe’s debt situation.
The proposed compensation plan aims to leverage capital markets by developing innovative financial instruments and structures.
The bank is working closely with the Government of Zimbabwe to implement this strategy and front-load the mobilization of funds for compensations.
While specific details were not provided during the press conference, Adesina urged development partners to collaborate on this proposed structure, which would allow the funding of compensations without adding to Zimbabwe’s existing debt burden.
Zimbabwe’s land reform policy, initiated by former President Robert Mugabe in the early 2000s, led to the expropriation of land from white farmers to be redistributed to Black families.
This controversial policy not only sparked international criticism and western sanctions but also resulted in the country’s economic collapse due to high inflation and mounting debt.
In 2020, the Zimbabwean government made a significant decision to compensate white farmers for their losses. The AfDB’s commitment to helping raise the necessary funds signifies a collaborative effort between the bank and the Zimbabwean government to address the historical grievances and promote economic stability.
The successful implementation of this compensation plan could contribute to the country’s ongoing efforts to rebuild its economy and strengthen international relationships.