01.12.2016

“We have heard that white men are now coming again, with a new project,” she says. First her father and other people from her village grew tobacco for the Portuguese. Then they planted Jatropha. “Now it is supposed to be maize,” Ms Vurande explains, digging over a small maize field in between the fallow shrubs. Her twelve-year-old daughter is helping her. She lets the maize corns fall to the ground and covers them with the deep-brown soil. “There they are,” she says, pointing to a lorry. “They’re workers staking out routes for new roads.” This has roused excitement among the villagers. “They’re saying that a plantation will be coming and that we’ll have to hand over our land. But we have protested against this,” says Ms Vurande. The authorities seem to have backed down. “They’ve promised us that there will be a meeting at which the land is to be distributed among us all.” But will this really happen?