Social and Economic Effects of Land Redistribution Programme in Zimbabwe Erdem Kilic

Essay by ErdemKUUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, March 2004

download word file, 9 pages 3.0

The government of Zimbabwe officially announced the introduction of the land reform programme in1985, declaring it would acquire more than 3,000 farms for redistribution. According to government figures, whites owned 40 percent of Zimbabwe's agricultural land which is around 10 million hectares as recently as 1980, but black Zimbabweans live in over-crowded communal areas which have arid soil and have little or no access to water. ("The Politics of Land," 2003). Because the people see land as an alternative source of income and food security, an inequality emerges from the situation. As a consequence of this unequal and race-based pattern of land occupation, the Zimbabwean government decided to take somewhat more solid steps and started the new land reform programme. This movement seemed to be a seeking process of democracy in the country. However, Robert Mugabe's main point was that the land-reform was essential for poverty reduction, social stability and economic growth.

In fact, the land-reform increased the unemployment rate, damaged the Zimbabwean economy and caused social problems.

Zimbabwe has been a colony of Great Britain since the arrival of Cecil Rhodes to the country in 1988. The Ndebele, inhabitants of the region, signed a treaty which allowed the British to mine gold in the area with the British South Africa Company in 1888. After the treaty, increasing flow of settlers led to war with the Ndebele in 1893. The Ndebele were defeated and a serious European immigration to the region began. The region became a colony with the increasing number of whites. In 1922 a referendum was held, and the referendum represented a clear disagreement between the whites and the blacks. Whites chose to become a self-governing colony rather than become part of the Union of South Africa. As a result of the referendum, Southern Rhodesia was founded as...