Remember when President Robert Mugabe began forcibly expropriating white-owned farms, replacing their owners with his cronies and Zimbabwean civil-war veterans?
A presidential agency Monday decided to confiscate land that is now owned by the descendants of 10 pro-Japan collaborators during the colonial period (1910-1945). It was the second step after the agency decided to seize the property of the offspring of another nine pro-Japan collaborators last May.
The Investigative Commission on Pro-Japanese Collaborators’ Property has conducted the confiscation as part of the efforts to clear away the colonial-era legacy. The commission will seize about one million square meters of land by the 10 collaborators, which is valued at 25.7 billion won.
The confiscation is possible due to the National Assembly’s enactment of a special law in December 2005. The law allows the agency to seize property assets that pro-Japan collaborators obtained between 1904 and Aug. 15 in 1945 for their cooperation with Japan. Property that any third party obtained later without knowing the fact was excluded.
Five descendants of the 10 collaborators in the second decision and two of the nine in the first decision have lodged an objection and prepared for a lawsuit, the agency said.
Since the enactment of the law, the agency has made a list of 452 pro-Japan collaborators and examined the land of 109 among them. The total size of the land is estimated at 13.1 million square meters, worthy almost 100 billion won.
The seized property will be used to compensate independence fighters and their offspring for the sacrifices in the liberation of the country.