Mnangagwa Tricks Epworth Residents
29 May 2024
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By Political Reporter- Zanu PF President Emerson Mnangagwa has yet to deliver on his promise of title deeds to the residents of Epworth, a pledge he made during the run-up to the 2023 national elections.

A month before the elections, Mnangagwa assured Epworth residents that 11,000 title deeds would be issued. 

The Cabinet endorsed the Kwangu/Ngakwami Presidential Title Deeds Programme to provide the necessary financial and technical support.

Mnangagwa even distributed 265 securitized title deeds at the program’s launch at Epworth High School, promising more to come.

However, only a few ZANU PF activists were selected to receive these title deeds, leading to allegations that the government has “forgotten” about the project. According to a source: “Only a few were issued, those with close ties to ZANU PF. Land barons led by John Mabwe (coordinator and spokesperson for Kushinga Epworth Residents Trust) and Moyo are holding Epworth Local Board at ransom contesting the authenticity of the layout plans and general plans of Epworth… the surveyor general up to now is sleeping on duty.”

Mabwe highlighted discrepancies with the layout plan, noting it did not match a map from 2001 when squatters received occupiers’ cards. He stated: “The layout plan that was used does not match the map. We have simply challenged this. A lot of elderly widows and orphans were left out of the 2022 layout plan which was not even approved by the Surveyor-General. We want title deeds as early as yesterday but we want the right procedure to be followed and the right people to benefit.”

Further complicating the issue, Mabwe pointed out irregularities in Ward 6 (Overspill Extension): “The council pegged stands using a fake layout plan of Plan number H.O.F 8 and increased them from 3,856 to 3,904 to benefit some council officials. So the regularisation process is very scandalous. Council is doing what the High Court interdicted. That’s contempt of court.”

Epworth Town Secretary Wilton Mhanda declined to comment on the matter when approached by NewsDay.

Epworth North legislator Zivai Mhetu clarified that residents had received deeds of grant, not title deeds. He explained: “There is a difference between a deed of grant and a title deed. Development has to take place first, for instance, the installation of roads, among others. When this happens, Epworth residents will be able to receive title deeds in both paper and digital form. Hence, I will be lobbying Parliament for the construction of roads in Epworth.”

A title deed is a legal document that provides proof of ownership over property, real estate, and sometimes vehicles, establishing ownership rights and serving as evidence of ownership. In contrast, a grant deed indicates the transfer of property or real estate from one party to another but does not necessarily provide proof of ownership.

Source: NewsDay