Discarding the Filth
Interim report on the Zimbabwean government’s
“urban cleansing” and forced eviction campaign May/June 2005
Solidarity Peace Trust
The Solidarity Peace Trust
Solidarity Peace Trust is a non-governmental organisation, registered in
The co-chairpersons are:
Archbishop Pius A Ncube; Catholic Archbishop of
Bishop Rubin Phillip; Anglican Bishop of
The objectives of the Trust are:
individuals, organisations, churches and affiliated organisations in southern
I. Introduction 5
International laws and Conventions 7
II Operation Murambatsvina: a brief overview 9
1. A change in official rhetoric – but not actions 10
2. Implications for food security 11
3. Education and health 11
III OM: the Government’s declared intentions 12
1. Restoring law and order 12
2. Destroying the parallel market 13
IV The National Legal context of “Operation Murambatsvina” 14
i. Regional, Town and Country Planning Act 15
ii. Legal action 16
Legal context in other towns 16
How do you catch a criminal? 17
Rhetoric of the media 18
4. Assessment of success of
V OM: the Government’s undeclared intentions 20
1. Retribution - and control of the towns 20
2. Fear of an uprising 21
3. Patronage 21
Social engineering 22
VI Evictions: past and present 24
Native reserves 24
Protected villages 24
2. Post –
i. Churu Farm: 1992 25
ii. Hatcliffe Extension 25
iii. Peri-urban housing co-operatives 26
iv. Destruction of backyard dwellings 27
VII Case study: Killarney displaced 28
1. Statistical summary 29
2. Conclusion 30
Appendix One: Chronicle of events according to Government sources 33
Two: Speech by the Chairperson of
Cde Sekesai Makwavarara on the occasion of the official
launch of “Operation Murambatsvina” at the Town House
Appendix Three: Information Form: Operation Murambatsvina 36
Four: Message of Solidarity to
the people of
from Bishop Rubin Phillip of Kwazulu Natal
This report is an interim report.
Discarding the Filth” is a continuing one in
With unemployment standing at 75 percent, how can one destroy a fellow Zimbabwean’s only source of income and then follow the same person and destroy his home? 1
This is not the first time this Government has used “cleaning” terminology to describe a process in which Zimbabweans themselves become victims of a politically driven purge. In the 1980s, the Mugabe Government launched the now-infamous “Gukurahundi” campaign, where “gukurahundi” means “the spring rain that gets rid of the chaff from the last season”. 2 “Gukurahundi” resulted in the massacre of an estimated 10,000 civilians in the western region of the country, and hundreds of thousands of other human rights violations. People in ZAPU supporting regions perceived that they were the rubbish that had to be washed away.
after the parliamentary elections, Mugabe made a speech in which he told the
To date “Murambatsvina” has resulted in an estimated 300,000 displacements of civilians in urban areas countrywide, with mass loss of livelihoods and property.4 It has also resulted in the deaths of two babies, crushed to death in their own homes under the relentless shovels of bulldozers. It is hard to estimate the numbers of old and ill who have died prematurely of exposure, sleeping in the open since the demolition of their shelters: these people may have been about to die in any case, but have suffered hastened and ignominious deaths in cold winter rubble and the heartache of razed suburbs.
A month into the exercise, and in response to overwhelming international outrage, the Government rhetoric has suddenly shifted. From portraying those who live in unregulated housing and those who work in the informal sector as thieves, criminals, smugglers and economic saboteurs, the Government has suddenly discovered a need to build low income housing in these razed suburbs. Suddenly the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has been given two days to source an unbudgeted trillion dollars to rebuild that which has been destroyed. 5 Let nobody be deceived: this belated humanitarian response is window dressing ahead of a UN delegation that will soon visit the nation to assess the degree to which the Zimbabwean Government is in violation of its international obligations.
The rhetoric from a multitude of government officials that has accompanied this forced displacement, is that those who have lost their homes must “go back to rural areas where they came from”. When ZANU PF Members of Parliament were this week accused of having left people homeless by destroying their urban houses, a member of Cabinet denied this, saying:
It is common cause that the definition of an indigenous person is one who has a rural home allocated to him by virtue of being indigenous, and a home that one has acquired in an urban area because it has been bought or it has been allocated to him by the State. 6
by Government, police and
The Government had made no contingency plans whatsoever to move people, or to create new housing for them, until a few days ago. Nor was any transport provided for the thousands who sat stranded for days in bus stations pathetically trying to move their few salvaged belongings out of the cities. In fact, thousands of urban dwellers do not have a rural home, and they have been left stranded. 7
factor to consider in relation to the Government’s recently
declared intent to build new housing in razed suburbs is raised in more detail
later in this report – the issue
of patronage. The Government may rebuild certain areas of
It is predictable indeed, that in a year from now the informal sector will be establishing itself again, in both trading and housing – but that the sector will have substantially changed hands, and belong to those key members of the military and other civil servants that the Government needs to keep loyal in order to remain in power.
International laws and Conventions
This exercise that we have applied in the last month or so has been one of the biggest reversals of rural-urban migration. 9
International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights,
The Zimbabwe Government is in violation of this Covenant, to which it is signatory. In terms of the Covenant, no government can evict people without having made an alternative plan to house them.
Governing Council of the United Nations Compensation Commission
Forced displacement for political reasons would qualify as a Category G offence, in terms of the Governing Council of the United Nations Compensation Commission. 10
Category G: The individual was deprived of all economic resources, such as to threaten
seriously his or her survival and that of his or her spouse, children or parents,
in cases where assistance from his or her Government or other sources has not
Thousands of those currently being displaced, who have lost both homes and livelihoods and now face starvation in rural areas, would have a strong argument that the actions of their State have deprived them of all economic means to a life threatening degree. In theory, they can claim material compensation in terms of this Council.
of the Zimbabwe Government in forcibly removing hundreds of thousands of its
citizens, meet the criteria of a crime against humanity as defined in Article 7
For the purpose of the Statute, “crime against humanity” means any of the following acts when committed as part of the widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population with knowledge of the attack:
Deportation or forcible transfer of population
2. (d) “deportation or forcible transfer of population” means forced displacement of the persons concerned by expulsion or other coercive acts from the area in which they are lawfully present, without grounds permitted under international law.
on the International Commission of Intervention and State Sovereignty, entitled “The Responsibility to Protect”, published in December 2001, outlines the core principles
of how the UN should react when nations are degenerating into chaos. These
principles were derived in direct response to the world’s failure to intervene in
The principles arrived at by the committee set up by the General Assembly in 2000 tackles the legal, moral and ethical issues around this topic. The basic principles the committee arrived at are given below.
A. State sovereignty implies responsibility, and the primary responsibility for the protection of its people lies with the state itself.
B. Where a population is suffering serious harm, as a result of internal war, insurgency, repression or state failure, and the state in question is unwilling or unable to halt or avert it, the principle of non-intervention yields to the international responsibility to protect.
The United Nations needs to ask itself whether the failure of the Zimbabwean state to protect its people, and its deliberate creation of a humanitarian disaster that threatens to engulf millions of Zimbabweans, is not a situation where the principle of non intervention needs to yield to the international responsibility to protect.
deliberate destruction of homes in a nation that already faces a most terrible
winter of unemployment, hunger and collapsing resources, is nothing short of
To keep insisting, as ZANU PF has been doing, that if you do not have a rural home then you are not a real Zimbabwean is an insult to the possibly millions of citizens who are born in Zimbabwe and have helped build this nation, but whose parents happen to Malawian, Mozambican or Zambian. ZANU PF’s argument that people “must go back to their rural homes” is insupportable as justification for displacing hundreds of thousands of the nation’s citizens from their chosen homes in the urban areas. There are millions of Zimbabweans of Zimbabwean descent who have been raised in the cities, and who have never lived full time in a rural area and who have no intention of doing so. They have been raised in an urban environment of electricity, running water, at least some schooling and tertiary training options, and at least some possibility of eking out a paid living. In rural areas, most people have to walk all day collecting firewood, carry buckets of water for 10 km, study by candle light, attend schools with no resources, and accept a life of general poverty and subsistence, with almost no money-generating options. In the current political environment, rural life also means the real danger of starving to death.
For the Government to presume to dictate that hundreds of thousands of their fellow citizens should be driven out of the towns like so much filth and into lives of abject poverty is indeed a crime against humanity.
II. Operation Murambatsvina: a brief overview
Government, under the auspices of the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises
the month of June,
thousands of dwellings have been bulldozed during the last four weeks,
displacing people on a massive scale. The scale of the displacements has been
and dwellings continue to fall at this time, numbers of people affected are
growing daily. It is difficult to estimate how many houses have been knocked
down, but in
Along the width and breadth of Zimbabwe, by the middle of a wintry June, families were to be seen sleeping under trees or on pavements, trying to protect small children, the elderly and the ill from winter weather and thieves, with no access to ablutions, and nowhere to cook or store food properly. Tiny babies, days old, and people on their deathbeds alike continue to sleep at the mercy of the elements. Bus stations remain filled to overflowing with families sitting hopelessly next to furniture and building materials salvaged from the onslaught, waiting in vain for buses prepared to carry the loads to rural areas.
Those with trucks struggle to access scarce diesel, which now costs up to Z$50,000 per litre, when the official price is Z$4,000 per litre; those with fuel are charging extortionist rates to move desperate families short distances. It costs Z$200,000 to move a wardrobe by bus – desperate families without this money are selling their assets off at a tenth of the transport cost in order to raise fares for their wives and children to get home. They will arrive in some remote, starving rural area without a job, without food, without furniture, without a house – and be at the mercy of a ZANU PF dominant rural leadership to whom they will have to appeal for a space to live.
Other wares were taken by the police, and are being sold off through “auctions” in which the police buy goods worth hundreds of thousands of dollars for a few dollars. These auctions are not open to the general public, and there is no process of highest bidder, but any minor offer is accepted. No records or receipts are being kept during this process. Police have also been reported selling goods seized by them from vendors, directly to the public. 14
1. A change in official rhetoric – but not actions
In the face
of multiple statements condemning events in
early weeks and until international pressure mounted, the Government actively
obstructed civic organisations including churches from offering humanitarian
aid to the thousands of families stranded on pavements and in the rubble of
their homes. 15 By late June, a month into the evictions, no plans to
accommodate people in
2. Implications for food security
In the rural areas there are already food concerns; with the additional families now fleeing there, aid agencies are going to have their work cut out for them. 17
been expressed both within and without
3. Education and health
whose homes have been razed have dropped out of school in large numbers. Some
have put the figure as high as 300,000 affected so far. 20 Directors of Education
in the country’s ten provinces have estimated
an average of 100 pupils per primary school to have dropped out. However, in
settlements where displacement has been 100%, the number is far higher, and
some schools are now effectively empty. For fear of separation, families are
staying together at this time; parents are concerned that if their children go
to school, they may come home to find their parents arrested, or forcibly
trucked to somewhere like Caledonia Farm. Parents have expressed concern about
how they will, in their new totally impoverished situation, afford school fees
to place their children into new schools, or to keep them in school. While the
health services in
1. Restoring law and order
“Operation Murambatsvina” has targeted firstly the informal trading sector, and secondly the informal housing sector. In a collapsing nation, where the State can no longer provide adequate housing, access to health care or education, and in which the formal economy has shrunk to an employment base of no more than 20%, the informal sector is the lifeblood of the nation. However, in the government’s perception;
Crooks, greedy people, opportunists and black market traders in foreign currency, fuel and basic commodities had found convenient operational bases in the informal sector. The obscene feast is over. Law and order must now prevail. 22
Chairperson of the Harare Commission Cde Sekesai Makwavarara on the occasion of
the official launch of “Operation
Murambatsvina” at the Town House on
of the by-laws are in areas of vending, traffic control, illegal structures,
touting/abuse of commuters by rank marshals, street-life/prostitution,
vandalism of property infrastructure, stock theft, illegal cultivation, among
others have led to the deterioration of standards thus negatively affecting the
image of the City. The attitude of members of the public as well as some City
officials has led to a point whereby
While enforcing the law and returning the glow to the city may sound commendable and well intentioned on the face of it, the sheer suddenness and cruelty with which the State has attacked the homes and livelihoods of its own citizens, has left the entire nation reeling. The Harare Commission is mired in controversy and illegalities of its own, and has run the city so appallingly badly and with so little regard for the welfare of its citizens, that it is difficult to take its sudden concern with the well-being of the city at face value. 24
2. Destroying the parallel market
Is the nation being told that the Zimbabwean police are incapable of conducting an operation and effecting the arrest of suspects without burning down or dismantling structures? 25
It is apparent that the Governor of the Reserve Bank of
Zimbabwe (RBZ), Gideon Gono, has been intimately involved in
We enjoy the support of all the law enforcement arms of the State and Government itself to win the battle against indiscipline, corruption, illegality and the sheer madness that we have been witnessing on the streets, at airports and border posts… 27
There is a clear economic dimension to
By attempting to smash the flea markets and street corner trade, the Government is hoping to channel more of this foreign exchange through the formal banking sector. Gono’s own target in terms of the RBZ Foreign Exchange inflows is for Diaspora forex to total US$585 million by the end of 2005; yet the same Table acknowledges that in the first 4 months of 2005, only US$13,6 million has come via this source! 30 This is less than US$ 4 million a month. To meet the declared target, US$70 million a month would have to flow in from this source for the rest of 2005, a twenty-fold monthly increase. If Gono’s target were met, this would make the Diaspora the second biggest forex source in the nation, after auction purchases.
Gono’s role in
Gono in the RBZ Report piously refers to Jesus suffering on the cross, and draws a parallel to the need for Zimbabweans to suffer “pain and sacrifice” in order to rescue the economy: “we have to take the pain like grown-ups”, Gono announces, one day after OM has begun its ruthless assault on thousands of Zimbabweans in the informal sector. 33 It seems the ordinary street vendor must be crucified to meet Gono’s financial targets. One cannot but agree with the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition when they point out that in an economy where 80% of people survive through the informal sector,
…torching people’s markets and arresting street kids will not help the economy,
bring in fuel, foreign currency, or fill the granaries of
It would be
interesting to hear a comment from the Governor of the Reserve Bank now that he
has been asked to source an unbudgeted trillion dollars to repair the
catastrophic damage of
IV. The National Legal context of “Operation Murambatsvina”
used by the government-controlled press throughout the early
many informal settlements have been given official approval over the years,
have had permanent schools and clinics, water and electricity provided by
Government and council, and residents have been congratulated in ceremonies by
Government officials for having shown initiative in providing their own housing. 35
It is incomprehensible that the very government and council that have spent
resources acknowledging and servicing informal settlements should now destroy
them, in the name of law and order. Other informal settlements, such as
1. Legal Context of
i. Regional, Town and Country Planning Act
indication of the looming “Operation
Restore Order” was the placement in the
Apart from being
badly written 36, the order is not in accordance with the Urban Councils
Act or the Regional Town and Country Planning Act. 37
This advert was the only warning given to the thousands of homeowners in
Furthermore, it is apparent that the actions of police and/or city council did not in fact abide by the Urban Councils Act, or by their own order as published. In the order, it is clearly stated that:
This order will
come into operation on the
Less than a
week after the first publication of this very general notice to all homeowners
Council of Harare indicates in this order that they may in terms of Section 34
issue a PROHIBITION ORDER, prohibiting the use of any illegal development at
any time before 20 June. The city is within the terms of the law to prohibit
use of an illegal structure with immediate effect, if it is posing a hazard to
human health and safety for example. However, they are not entitled to demolish such structures
with immediate effect in terms of section 34, or any other section,
By going ahead with demolition without having served individual orders, followed by a 30 day period of right to appeal, the city council and the police were therefore in contravention of the Regional, Town and Country Planning Act Section 38, as well as Section 199 of the Urban Councils Act.
ii. Legal action
A group of residents whose homes had been demolished, represented by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, did take the city and the police to court, using the above arguments. However, it came as no surprise that a politically biased judgment was passed: while acknowledging that people should have been given more warning prior to demolition of their homes, the judge found in favour of the police and the city council and ruled the demolitions legal. ZLHR have indicated that in their opinion, the ruling completely disregards the laws in question, which are unambiguous in terms of correct legal procedure.
2. Legal context in other towns
In all other
…have become the accuser, the judge and the enforcement agents… the police had no demolition orders from the courts. The move by the government encourages anarchy. Where are they going to resettle the displaced people? 38
It is up to the urban council to identify
illegal structures and serve orders on owners, and not for the police to
unilaterally decide what is legal and what is not. Yet in Bulawayo, Victoria
Falls, Beitbridge, Kariba, Mutare, Zvishavane, Masvingo, Kwekwe, Gweru and a
host of other little towns, the police acted in isolation of urban councils,
and destroyed homes of thousands of Zimbabweans. They did so often on a few
minutes’ notice, and often in the late
afternoon, or before sunrise; people were roused at in
Before the raid police had a brief meeting with the illegal vendors and other squatters in which they gave them some minutes to remove their properties which included beds, wardrobes, kitchen cupboards, cooking utensils and stoves among other property. 40
In the City
The Mayor of
Bulawayo was not consulted in any way before the police began their crackdown
on the city, even though in terms of the Urban Councils Act, identification of
illegal structures and control of vendors is the city council responsibility.
The first the Mayor knew about
sites closed down in
trying to outlaw all forms of vending, the Government has also pursued other
small to medium enterprises in
explained that the council in
3. How do you catch a criminal?
There are no sacred cows. Criminals have been hiding in the shacks and we are after them. They shall face the wrath of the law. 44
It is a matter of fact that many vendors are unlicensed and that some vendors, whether licensed or not, are taking part in illegal activities. The question is merely whether it has been necessary to destroy the entire informal sector in order to catch the few culprits. As the Mayor of Bulawayo commented during an interview: 45
How do you recognise a criminal? You knock down his entire house and then say – aha, now I see you, you are a criminal!
Government press occasionally acknowledges the existence of licensed vendors – although the arresting police did not. On 2 June, The
Herald refers to 25,000 licensed vendors in
i. Rhetoric of the media
In order to
expose the relentlessness of propaganda linked to informal traders during
The article is 17 sentences long, and uses the following words:
Criminal - 6 times; Illegal - 4 times; Stolen - 4 times; Smuggled – 1x; Carjackers - 1x;
Housebreakers – 1x.
TOTAL – 17 derogatory phrases relating to the market activities, in 17 sentences.
Yet the article does not mention a single arrest as a result of the reported raid, nor even one actual criminal, smuggler, carjacker or house-breaker being identified.
4. Assessment of success
It is difficult to believe that the police are so misguided as to think that the best way to apprehend criminals is to knock down entire markets, arrest everyone who does not run away fast enough whether licensed or not, and to raze thousands of houses to the ground. It is also clear that if this was their belief, it has been proved wrong; countrywide, the haul of stolen
It is fair
to say that far from restoring law and order, the police have been violating
basic laws and the rights of citizens continuously for the last month,
resulting in devastating loss. The government press reported 22,000 arrests in
the first week of
4. Assessment of success
It is difficult to believe that the police are so misguided as to think that the best way to apprehend criminals is to knock down entire markets, arrest everyone who does not run away fast enough whether licensed or not, and to raze thousands of houses to the ground. It is also clear that if this was their belief, it has been proved wrong; countrywide, the haul of stolen goods and arrests of genuine criminals has been pitiful in relation to the numbers of innocent victims who have lost all their hard earned, honestly owned goods. As the Mayor of Bulawayo pointed out –
striking fear into the hearts of many small time parallel market dealers may
have caused a temporary lull in this activity, in a bankrupt nation, where no
real wealth is being generated, this cannot be a strategy for “economic recovery”. It is a
matter of time before new outlets are found for those receiving forex from the
Diaspora to cash their money outside of the banking system. If the Government
wants to improve the economic well being of
It is not the people of
many commentators believe that the publicly-stated intentions of government
were not the only, or the main intentions in relation to
The material outcome from “Operation Murambatsvina” has been to cause such untold suffering to so many thousands of Zimbabwe’s poorest, to have left towns and cities in a greater state of chaos and disarray than before, and to have produced very little tangible in terms of proof that vendors are mainly squalid thieves and racketeers, that civil society organisations and the international community have been left searching for alternative explanations for OM. 51
1. Retribution - and control of the towns
Most of MDC’s 41 parliamentary seats were won in urban areas. In three consecutive elections, urbanites across the nation have registered a strong vote against the current government. OM has been seen as an act of retribution against areas known by government to have voted for the opposition, simultaneously punishing MDC-supporting urban centres and sending a message that it is irrelevant whether urban MPs and town councils are MDC or not. As long as ZANU PF controls the army and police, the ruling party has control of the towns and can do as it will in urban areas. 52
government has little respect or liking for the urban population; ZANU PF’s national identity is very much rooted in rural,
90% of all people who have been voted into Parliament from the other side (MDC) are not indigenous and the constituencies they talk about have no identity and recognition. 54
thousands of urban dwellers who have been displaced have also been
disenfranchised. They are registered to vote in constituencies where they now
no longer reside. While it is unclear how ZANU PF wants to constitute the
proposed senate, which it intends to stream roller through parliament shortly,
it seems likely that there will be elections for senators within the next few
months. Disenfranchising thousands of possible MDC voters ahead of senate
elections and urban council elections scheduled for November 2005 is an obvious
positive spin off of
using brute force to show who is in control, ZANU PF has also moved to
undermine urban councils in
2. Fear of an uprising
hardship, real anger and poverty escalate, the government has reason to be
increasingly afraid of a popular uprising. By removing all vendors,
The Minister of Small and Medium Enterprise Development, Sithembiso Nyoni, and other Government officials have repeatedly stated that informal traders will be given new sites in enclosed markets on the outskirts of towns. Again, this points to a concern by Government to keep milling groups of people away from the city centre. Traders have already indicated that it does not make business sense for them to be hidden away from their potential customers.
In a country threadbare of wealth, the informal sector is an asset that the ruling party wishes to control to buy the loyalty of those on whom it relies to retain its power. In the wake of the 2005 election, with ZANU PF enraged by the cities’ failure to vote for them, those of unclear or opposition political affiliation are being removed from the informal housing and employment sectors, displaced into impoverished rural areas, and the entire informal urban sector appears to be in the process of being reallocated to ZANU PF supporters.
The Government is usurping the powers of MDC-dominated city councils, in relation to who gets stands for housing and who gets licenses to vend. Already, vending licenses are being reissued to people not through city councils as before, but through an “inter-ministerial committee” which “will among other duties facilitate vetting of vendors, registration of vendors and relocation of vendors to identified sites in the outskirts of the central business districts.” This committee involves the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and Urban Development, the Governor’s Office, and the Department of Construction. 58 The police have to vet applicants and part of the vetting process as to who is fit to get a license and who is not, is reported to be proof of ZANU PF affiliation. The process of vetting is intimidatory in itself, considering the current role being played by the police, who have criminalised thousands of ordinary Zimbabweans struggling to make an honest living.
Another “inter-ministerial committee” consisting of nine ministries has been appointed to oversee the ongoing clean up campaign, which will soon re-allocate land vacated by the demolitions. This committee will be under the control of the Zimbabwe National Army, and will include the Provincial Administrators, the Dept of Public Works, the President’s Office (Central Intelligence Organisation), the Ministry of Youth Development and Employment Creation (who oversee the youth militia), the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprise Development, the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare, as well as local councils and Residents Associations. 59
Considering the makeup of these OM committees, which are heavily weighted in favour of government representatives including the CIO, the youth militia and the army, it is hardly surprising that even as the dust is still settling in the ruins of demolished houses on White Cliff Farm, building sites are allegedly being re-pegged and allocated to members of the military, the police, and other key civil servants. 60
Just as commercial farms provided a resource to reward friends in high places in the wake of the Presidential election, so the informal economy and housing sectors are now being parcelled out to the middle ranks. With a national housing backlog of 2 million, the majority of home seekers will remain homeless – even if the government follows through on its recent statements to increase numbers of building sites. The ruling party therefore needs to control who gets the sites available. This is social engineering.
4. Social engineering
This kind of
a mass eviction drive is a classic case where the intention appears to be that
Considering the long-standing colonial injustices caused by forced removals and the artificial creation of native reserves, the forced removal of Zimbabweans from their urban homes in 2005 is hard to accept. The War of Liberation was fought to redress all the imbalances of colonialism, including the exclusion of the majority of Zimbabweans not only from prime farming land, but also from ownership of the cities and from the advantages offered by urban centres in terms of improved housing, educational and employment opportunities. As Raftopoulos has pointed out,
…despite the discriminatory policies they faced, Africans made the cities their home and fought for their rights to live and raise families in urban areas. 62
current government has become as intolerant of urbanites as the colonial
regime: “anti-urbanism has become one of the
hallmarks of the ruling party’s
authoritarian nationalism”. 63 The
Government has indicated in relation to
The rhetoric from a multitude of government officials that has accompanied this forced displacement, is that those who have lost their homes must “go back to rural areas where they came from”. When ZANU PF Members of Parliament were accused of having left people homeless by destroying their urban houses, a member of Cabinet denied this, saying:
It is common cause that the definition of an indigenous person is one who has a rural home allocated to him by virtue of being indigenous, and a home that one has acquired in an urban area because it has been bought or it has been allocated to him by the State. 64
On 2 June,
Minister Didymus Mutasa told BBC World that “people must
go back to their rural homes”. 65 Officer Commanding
Harare City Council spokesperson Leslie Gwindi commented: “All we are saying is that we want all the illegal structures removed. And we will not look for other places for them because how did they come to be where they are staying now?” 67
Particularly in Mashonaland, rural areas are ZANU PF strongholds. The traditional leadership controls access to all communal resources, including the right to build a home, the right to graze, or plant a crop – and the right to Grain Marketing Board maize sales, the only source of grain in rural areas, most of which are currently facing starvation. People are being forcibly moved from MDC dominant urban centres to ZANU PF dominant rural areas; it is simple, those translocated will have to show allegiance to ZANU PF or face a real risk of starvation this winter. 68
being reduced from a poor urban lifestyle to that of impoverished peasants.
Parallels have been drawn between what is happening in
It means people are now going straight into abject poverty. What we used to have was veiled poverty but now it will be real naked suffering where you see unemployment and homelessness openly with no alternative sources of income. 70
The Government’s recent claims that the cities are over populated and the victim of rural to urban drift is inconsistent with their previous rhetoric: prior to the recent parliamentary elections, the Government argued that people had moved out of the towns and into the rural areas in order to benefit from the land acquisition programme, and this argument was used to take away four constituencies from the MDC strongholds of Bulawayo and Harare! 71
VI. Evictions: past and present
i. Native Reserves
ii. “Protected villages”
The most notorious forced removals during the colonial era occurred between 1972 and 1978, when an estimated 500,000 rural civilians were removed from their rural homesteads and incarcerated in “protected villages” (PVs). 73 In 1974, the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) estimated forced removals into PVs at the rate of 43,000 in one month in Chiweshe Tribal Trust Lands. 74 Conditions in these PV detention camps were appalling. The forced removals involved total destruction of crops, dispersal of livestock, and destruction of rural homes, even by aerial bombing. The objective was to remove the rural network on which guerrilla forces depended for information and food, but the outcome was to radically disrupt the normal lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians. CCJP documented the negative impacts on agriculture and livelihood, health, social functioning, education.
2. Post –
interesting to note that the rate at which people have been made homeless in
Zimbabwe in the last month exceeds even the highest monthly rate (43,000) at
which the Rhodesians incarcerated civilians in PVs in the 1970s. The total
figures of those displaced could also ultimately exceed those of the Rhodesian
PV era. While those being displaced currently are not being put into controlled
camps, conditions in rural areas and degree of control of access to them in the
months ahead cannot be foreseen at this time, although there has been an
increasing trend in the last five years to impose strong controls on movements
in rural areas. Impact on the lives of those being displaced now, including
their access to resources including health, education, housing and food cannot
be properly assessed at this early stage, although the signs are not encouraging.
Conditions at Caledonia Farm in greater
It is not possible in this report to detail the 2005 evictions nationwide in minute detail. Two areas of Harare where evictions have been total have therefore been briefly highlighted; there is brief acknowledgment of the demolitions of backyard structures that have affected thousands, followed by a small case study of the eviction and family profiles of the Killarney-displaced in Bulawayo. Documentation of evictions nationwide is continuing, and the situation will be updated in further reports as appropriate.
i. Churu Farm: 1992
evictions of 2005 are not the first experience of eviction in post-independence
ii. Hatcliffe Extension
The Churu evictees were later moved from Porta Farm to Hatcliffe Extension, north of the city. They were ordered not to build permanent structures, as Government would resettle them soon – which they never did. The original residents of Hatcliffe Extension had therefore been in this area since 1993, a period of 12 years, and they were in this suburb because the current government resettled them there. Since 1993, there have been numerous occasions in which Government Ministers have visited the area and endorsed its existence. In 1995, in response to local requests, the Catholic Church established an orphanage and care centre for those suffering from HIV, consisting of a large complex of buildings. Over time, people also constructed substantial homes.
During the last sitting of Parliament, a resolution was unanimously passed upgrading Hatcliffe Extension to a legal housing settlement. On the grounds that it was a legal housing area, the World Bank financed the development of a main water supply and sewerage works for the suburb. 77
Yet all of the structures in Hatcliffe Extension were razed to the ground during the last week of May 2005, as the State suddenly insisted that the housing here was illegal – thousands of homes, the orphanage, vendors’ stalls – all were reduced to splinters and ashes. Even a mosque was dismantled at gun-point, on 29 May. Sister Patricia of the Dominican Sisters described the chaos at the orphanage, housing 180 AIDs orphans, on the day of its destruction:
I arrived, I wept, Sister Carina was with me, she wept, the people tried to console us - they were ALL outside in the midst of their broken houses, furniture and goods all over the place, children screaming, sick people in agony. How does one say that Peter aged 10 and his little brother (John) aged 4 (not their real names) are "illegal"? We had provided them with a wooden hut when their Mother was dying, she has died in the meantime, these two little people had their little home destroyed in the middle of the night, we get there, they are sitting crying in the rubbish (that was their home until Sunday) - what do we do with them? …. A Grandmother asks, "Sister why has God abandoned us? I do not try to answer. 78
after the initial evictions here, riot police returned and burnt every
remaining scrap of furniture and building material to the ground. Bulldozers
moved in and scraped the earth clean. Approximately 30 families were forced
onto trucks, without being told where they were being taken, and were dumped on
Caledonia Farm, on the outskirts of
iii. Peri-urban housing co-operatives
and 2003, approximately 250,000 farm workers were forcibly displaced as a
result of the invasion of commercial farms. These evictions were on a par with
what is happening now in terms of numbers affected, but as they were happening
out of sight in rural farmlands, they were largely un-documented. At the same time as these hundreds of
thousands of Zimbabweans were losing their homes and livelihoods, war veterans
and others were being resettled on this land. Some of this resettlement took
place, with great support from Government, in farms in the peri-urban areas of
Cliff Farm on the southern side of
Government-controlled daily, The Herald, captures the suddenness with
which the police have descended on settlement after settlement in
At Nyadzonia and Chimoio co-operatives there was drama and pandemonium when about 25 police trucks screeched to a halt at about , sending about 250 policemen into the settlement. Within minutes, one by one, the two bulldozers razed to the ground the illegal structures while panic-stricken residents rushed to pull out of few of their belongings…
At Hatcliffe Extension many settlers were also caught unaware as about 150 policemen descended on the settlement to start the demolitions…. Those who were coming from various workplaces were shocked to find some of their structures razed to the ground while others had to join their families in removing furniture from their homes and other building materials such as asbestos sheets. 82
iv. Destruction of backyard dwellings
to the removal of entire suburbs on the outskirts of
Murerwa, who had lived in Mbare for most of his life, told IRIN his spirit had
been broken. "I have lost the only source of income that I had after my
vegetable stall was destroyed. Since 1981 the only place that I have known as a
home together with my family was [an illegal] backyard shack, and I cannot start
all over again," he said as he broke down in tears. Manjengwa Tawanda, who
has a wife and four children, told IRIN that his grandparents had come from
Many of the bulldozed homes were substantial dwellings, of cement bricks under corrugated iron roofs. In many instances they were being serviced by the city council, and were officially connected to city water supplies, and electricity. Most of the homeowners in Hatcliffe had been paying fees to the city council on a monthly basis. One person interviewed related how in early May his property was reassessed for purposes of increased rates, and that he was paying Z$1,200,000 in rates for his house and cottages. Two weeks later, his entire property was bulldozed flat - apparently with the authority of the same city council.
VII. Case study: Killarney displaced
community of around 800 residents has existed on the northern outskirts of
on Government land and not
The residents of Killarney had two weeks in which the demolition axe fell in slow motion. The first indication of a direct intention to demolish Killarney was on 29 May, when a photo of Killarney appeared on the front page of The Chronicle, under the headline “Clean-up campaign to sweep city”. On 8 June, police went to the area and told people to remove all their belongings from their houses, as they were being demolished. People duly removed their furniture, and for two days sat and waited for the demolitions, which did not come. They therefore moved their beds and furniture back into their homes – and at on 12 June, riot squads arrived in full force, waking people and barely giving them minutes to get out of their homes before they were torched. People fled in panic, as thatched roofs went up in flames and fell in on clothing and other belongings. As a result, many families lost not only their homes, but also most of their possessions.
In the few days after demolition, families sat stunned and indecisive. Bulawayo-based churches moved in and offered to accommodate the displaced, but some families were reluctant to make the leap and leave. As they rightly pointed out – the churches will accommodate us for a few days, and then what? However, three days after the initial torching of the settlement, police came back on horseback and found a few residents still there, guarding belongings and salvaged building materials that had not yet been moved to the churches. Priests had to intervene to prevent these things being burnt on the spot, but were informed that the police would come back on the 18 June to raze the area. This drove the few remaining residents to leave.
A few days
ago, the Government announced its intention to move the Killarney squatters
from the churches to Hellensvale Farm in Umguza District near
On 25 June, as this report was being finalised, new reports were coming in that some of the Killarney squatters, who had moved their belongings around 10 km away from Killarney to Cement Siding on the Bulawayo/Harare road, were being evicted again.
1. Statistical summary
As the Killarney displaced have been stationary in various church grounds for the last fortnight, this has presented an opportunity to gather some basic information about them. There has not been time to date to exhaustively analyse information from interviews that have been done, but a few basis statistics have been produced. 83
Total interviewees: 131
Total dependants: 294
Total displaced: 425
This sample represents approx 50% of the original Killarney population, which has been estimated at around 700- 800.
Single, female-headed families (widowed or divorced): 32 out of 131 => 25%
This indicates a high proportion of vulnerable family groupings.
Out of 294 dependants, 111 were children who had been in school in Killarney and who are now out of school.
One small peri-urban school lost a minimum of 111 pupils in one day. As the interviewees represent approx 50% of displaced, the number of children who dropped out of this school could be double this figure. As many of the children who have dropped out of school are in the first four grades, this could have left the school with almost empty classrooms in some instances.
Interviewees were asked whether they had a place to go or not. Results were as follows:
SOMEWHERE TO GO: YES: 40 => 30% of total interviewees
Rural destination: 22 => 56% or 17% of total interviews
Urban destination: 18 => 44% or 13% of total interviews
SOMEWHERE TO GO: NO: 91 => 70% of total interviewees
Lived in Killarney all life/many years: 19 => 21% of total interviews
Descended from foreign national: 19 => 21%
Relatives all dead/lost touch: 20 => 22%
“Nowhere to go”/ want to be in town 33 => 36%
This is a very telling result: out of this group, only 17% claim to have a rural home to go to – fewer than one in five family groups.
This statistic resoundingly contradicts the persistent claim of Government over the last month that to destroy informal settlements does not render people homeless, as everyone in Zimbabwe has a rural home to go to.
Another 13% indicated that they could find accommodation in an urban environment. For example, they have a town-based relative who could take them in temporarily at least, such as a child working as a domestic worker. In most cases, the urban option was going to be a temporary one.
majority – 70% - indicated that they had no other home or
There were three main reasons for this, all representing around 21% of interviewees, namely;
They had known no other home than Killarney, either because they had been born there, or had lived there for up to twenty years;
They were descended from a foreign national;
They had no surviving relatives left in their so-called rural home, or had such complicated family relationships (obstructive ex-husbands etc) that this was why they had left in the first place and going back was impossible.
Approximately 36% either did not elaborate on why they had “nowhere to go”, or insisted that they wanted to look for work in the town and therefore could not leave town. It might be the case that some of these respondents do have relatives in a rural district somewhere, but their adamant refusal to consider a rural option indicates that their rural identity is not important to them, or is even threatening to them at this time. Some respondents may feel that if they hint at a rural home, they will be trucked there and abandoned in the midst of starvation, with no house to get through the winter and surrounded by people who may not welcome more mouths to feed.
in this case study cannot be extrapolated to the entire displaced population.
While the sample group represents a large proportion of displaced squatters in
case study indicates that it is very simplistic, dangerous and inhumane for the
authorities to smash entire communities on the assumption that people are not
thus being rendered totally homeless and devoid of an extended social support
network. It is not true to say “there is nobody in
To keep insisting, as ZANU PF has been doing, that if you do not have a rural home then you are not a real Zimbabwean is an insult to the possibly millions of citizens who are born in Zimbabwe and have helped build this nation, but whose parents happen to Malawian, Mozambican or Zambian. There are also millions of Zimbabweans of Zimbabwean descent who have been raised in the cities, and who have never lived full time in a rural area and who have no intention of doing so. They have been raised in an urban environment that may have included electricity, running water, at least some schooling and tertiary training options, and at least some possibility of eking out a paid living. In rural areas, the majority of people have to walk long distances every day collecting firewood, carrying buckets of water, studying by candle light, attending schools with no resources, and accept a life of general poverty and subsistence, with few money generating options. In the current political environment, rural life also means the real danger of starving to death.
For the Government to presume to dictate that hundreds of thousands of their fellow citizens should be driven out of the towns like so much filth is indeed a crime against humanity.
19 May: Publication in The Herald of an
order by the City of
20 May: Release of Report by Governor of Reserve Bank
25 May: In Harare and
26 May: Resident Minister David Karimanzira
says: “there are more than 100 illegal
settlements and numerous illegal housing cooperatives in
Senior Asst Commissioner of Police Edmore Veterai warns people that destruction of illegal dwellings will continue, and will include White Cliff Farm and houses near the airport. Police “do not have time to pack people’s goods. They will just pull them down.” Force will be used if there is resistance. Unity Square is “cleaned” as are Fourth Street Bus Terminus and Julius Nyerere Footbridge.
27 May - Despite their own order indicating that
demolition could not begin before 20 June, destruction of informal housing begins in earnest in
1 June: informal markets and arrest of all vendors, whether licensed or not, picks up pace countrywide. Nyadzonia, Chimoio and Hatcliffe Extension are razed, including an AIDS orphanage for 180 orphans.
In Beitbridge, 165 arrests are made and 800 litres of fuel are confiscated.
27 May: There is a joint workshop in
28 May: President Mugabe supports the campaign: “Those who have wrongly suffered damage (Of their properties) action will be taken to remedy what will have been damaged. From the mess should emerge new businesses, new traders, new practices and a whole new and salubrious urban environment.”
30 May: The Mayor of Bulawayo says that he is not involved in the Clean-up campaign.
31 May: Police descend on
2 June: Minister Sithembiso Nyoni says that Government will relocate traders on the outskirts of the towns, and that sites have been identified. The Ministry of Youth and Gender says youth militia will build the new vendors’ sites. Inter-ministerial committees are being set up to “vet” would-be informal traders to weed out criminals.
Riot squads give people in Beitbridge a few minutes’ notice before knocking down over 200 dwellings.
5 June: Minister Chombo announces that
building regulations will be relaxed: people will be able to build mud houses
in the towns in future, as to insist houses are built out of bricks is “archaic and British oriented”. He says
youth militia will build the houses. This will reduce building costs by
60%. He implies the local MDC run
councils are deliberately withholding building stands and are too strict about
building requirements. He warns that
councils must clean up the debris of
6 June: The High Court rules that the demolitions are legal. Human rights lawyers say the ruling defies all logic and ignores the law, which is unambiguous: people served with a demolition order have 30 days in which to lodge an appeal. 87
10 June: President Mugabe says that the cleanup
campaign being carried out in major cities and towns was meant to deal with
illegal activities that were undermining the resuscitation of the economy. “So we had to take action and that action was not meant to
be the violation of human rights. No,” he
said. President Mugabe said
12 June: Squatter camps at Killarney in
The Government press comments: …“On our front page today, we publish an article spelling out the Government’ s plans to fund the construction of market stalls in Bulawayo and other areas following the clean up operation. This is commendable and disproves outrageous claims that vendors are being deprived of the source of survival by insensitive authorities.”
13 June: Illegal structures in the suburbs of
A clean-up campaign committee is set up consisting of army, CIO, the Ministries of Youth and Gender, Health and Child Welfare, Small and Medium Enterprise Development, and the Bulawayo United Residents’ Association is set up to oversee the resettlement of the displaced. The Government has set aside 300 billion for new traders’ stands.
14 June: The presidents of the Urban Councils Association of Zimbabwe and the Rural District Councils of Zimbabwe, Cdes Fani Phiri and Jerry Gotora, say the clean-up exercise was long overdue. “We have asked for arresting powers and we are hopeful they will be included in the amendments to the Rural District Councils Act which will be considered during the Sixth Parliament,” Gotora said.
15-20 June: Demolitions continue nationwide, but newspaper rhetoric shifts from condemning the displaced as thieves and criminals, to saying the exercise is a blessing in disguise because it will result in new housing for people, and in praising Government for intending to set aside funds for housing and vending.
20 June: Minister Sithembiso Nyoni refers yet again to the 300 billion for small enterprises, but admits the money is not actually there. “The Government will soon form a committee to raise funds for a Reconstruction and Infrastructural Development programme in cities and towns following “Operation Restore Order” – Sithembiso Nyoni. “A national ad hoc committee will be formed to ensure that there is money for the exercise.”… “The modalities of setting up the fund are yet to be worked out.”
22 June: The Government says that the displaced
The Chronicle reports that
2,338 backyard structures have been pulled down in
The operation is continuing, with
397 structures having been knocked down the previous day in Njube suburb of
24 June: The army is now heading the “clean-up” operation,
after an urgent meeting chaired by Major-General Amoth Chingombe. The exercise
is now a “reconstruction” one involving nine ministries, after a month of laying
waste the nation. In response to widespread international outcry, the RBZ has
been given two days to source a trillion dollars to rebuild in a massive public
works programme, that will begin at White Cliff Farm in
Speech by the Chairperson of the Harare Commission Cde Sekesai Makwavarara on the occasion of the official launch of “Operation Murambatsvina” at the Town House on 19th May, 2005 at 12 noon.
The City of
violations of the by-laws are in areas of vending, traffic control, illegal
structures, touting/abuse of commuters by rank marshals,
street-life/prostitution, vandalism of property infrastructure, stock theft,
illegal cultivation, among others have led to the deterioration of standards
thus negatively affecting the image of the City. The attitude of members of the
public as well as some City officials has led to a point whereby
Operation Murambatsvina, an ongoing exercise, the City of
eradication of chaos that currently prevails in the City, the seat of
Government, home to all diplomatic missions, headquarters of major business and
commercial activities requires the co-operation of all authorities, businesses
and individuals. The people of
Pursuant to this objective the City is calling upon all stakeholders to report any cases of corruption or incompetence by municipal workers and any form of vandalism and abuse of municipal property at any municipal office.
I urge all organisations and residents to cooperate during this ongoing
exercise, which is intended to bring sanity back to the City of
….Operation Murambatsvina is going to be a massive exercise in the CBD and the suburbs which will see to the demolition of all illegal structures and removal of all activities at undesignated areas, among the prior mentioned activities.
I, as the
Commission Chairperson of
Our aim is
Your aim will help.
[28 May 2005: The Saturday Herald: page 5]
INFORMATION FORM: OPERATION MURAMBATSVINA
Date of Interview…………………………… Name of interviewer…………………………….
Church/Place of temporary shelter…………….…………………………………………………
Day/Date of arrival at temporary shelter …….……………………………………………………
NAME…………………………………………… ID NO:…………………………………….
Male/Female.. AGE………… MARITAL STATUS………………………… …….
MOST RECENT PERMANENT ADDRESS……………………………………………………
Number of children/dependants, with ages………..……………………………………………
Number of children above who were in school…………………………………………………
Is anyone in family in poor health? Describe. ………………………………………………….
Date of eviction…………………………………….
Were you given warning? YES / NO If yes, how many days?………………
What reasons were given? ……………………………………… ………………………….
Who evicted you? POLICE / RIOT POLICE/ ARMY / YOUTH MILITIA/OTHER
What were they wearing?……………………………………………………………….
What weapons did they have?……………………………………… ………………..
If the following were involved, circle: Dogs / police on horse back / police vehicles / teargas
Were any threats / comments made during eviction? Say what……………………………….
What property loss did you experience? …………………………………… …………………
Do you have a district and village to go to? Where? ……………..…………… ………………
What do you need to get there? Bus fare / truck for goods / other
If you think you do not have another place to go to, explain your circumstances………………
The Right Revd Rubin Phillip
MESSAGE OF SOLIDARITY TO THE PEOPLE OF
My dear brothers and sisters,
Greetings in the name of our triumphant Lord!
It is with a mixture of deep sadness and anger that I write this
message of solidarity to you at this time of your national pain and suffering.
Anger at the inhumanity and brutality of the police and security forces in
destroying the homes and livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people across
In the light of these omissions, there is one who hears the cries
of His people, sees their oppression and is concerned about their suffering,
and who acts against injustice and brutality. However, as in the case of the
oppression of the Israelites in
In the same way today in Zimbabwe, – as in the SADC region and in the world - God is seeking men and women who will be His instruments of deliverance for the suffering and oppressed people of their countries, by confronting and speaking to those in power in a non-violent but non-compromising way. As with Moses, God promises to be with us and to strengthen us and to rescue us from the hand of the oppressor.
Our prayer for you at this time is that God will strengthen and
protect you and grant you great courage and fortitude in your struggle for your
freedom and dignity as the people of God created in His image and likeness. We
also pledge our on-going prayer and solidarity with you in this struggle, and
our support in helping to mobilize resources for those affected by the ‘tsunami’ which has hit
I am sorry that I cannot be with you today, but want to assure you that you are in our thoughts and prayers at this time, and that God who entered into our humanity through the person of Jesus Christ, and who shared in our human suffering, even to the point of death on a cross, is with you in your time of crisis.
In Christian love and partnership,
Bishop Rubin Phillip
Anglican Bishop of
Chair of the
Co-Chair of the Solidarity Peace Trust
1 The Financial Gazette, June
9-15: “Political Backlash
or genuine clean-up?” Comment by Luxon Zembe, President of the National
2 Catholic Commission for
Justice and Peace (CCJP) and Legal Resources Foundation, Breaking the
silence, building true peace: a report on the massacres in
3 CCJP, Ibid.
4 Figures vary and there is no clear way of assessing them and evictions continue to date. ZimRights estimated the displaced in Harare to be over 200,000 by early June, since when evictions have continued; in Victoria Falls a further 20,000 at least were displaced; in Bulawayo around 10,000 to date; in Beitbridge, Masvingo, Mutare, Kariba, Kwekwe, Gweru and elsewhere, figures remain unascertained but run to tens of thousands. The International Organisation for Migration has estimated the displaced at 64,000 families, which would also indicate around 300,000 people. Miloon Kothari, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, has claimed that as many as 3 million Zimbabweans may ultimately be affected if the exercise continues unchecked.
6 Statement made in Parliament,
7 A case study of some of the
8 Media Monitoring Project of
9 This statement was made
approvingly in Parliament on
10 See United Nations (1994), “Report of the Panel of Experts Appointed to Assist the United Nations Compensation Commission in Matters Concerning Compensation for Mental Pain and Anguish”, Geneva: United Nations; See also United Nations Security Council (1992), “Determination of Ceilings for Compensation for Mental Pain and Anguish”, Decision taken by the Governing Council of the United Nations Compensation Commission, Fourth Session, Geneva, 20-24 January 1992.
11 David Coltart, Shadow Minister of Justice in
12 CCJP, The Man in the Middle and Caught in the crossfire, republished 1999.
13 The Herald,
15 Interview with a
16 The Chronicle,
17 Robert Michel, World Vision, cited in IRIN,
19 Solidarity Peace Trust: Out for the Count, video and report details political abuse of food. May 2005.
20 Zim OnLine, 18 June.
21 Interview, Sr Patricia, AIDS orphanage, June 2005.
22 The Chronicle,
23 The Saturday Herald,
24 This document does not look at the maladministration of
25 The Financial Gazette, 27 May –
26 RBZ Report,
27 para 2.31
28 The Financial Gazette, June 9-15: “Political Backlash or genuine clean-up?”
29 Solidarity Peace Trust, No War in
30 Table 1 (a) page 4 of RBZ Report,
31 The issue of legality/ illegality of the vendors is explored at greater depth further ahead in this report.
32 The International Labour Organisation, cited in The
Zimbabwean, 24 June –
33 RBZ Report, 31:19 and 31:20.
34 Cited in The Financial Gazette, June 9-15, op cit. The
issue of the il/legality of the informal markets, and the type of proof of
illegal dealings produced by
35 For example, Hatcliffe Extension, razed to the ground in late May as an “illegal” settlement was in fact declared a legal settlement by a unanimous resolution during the last sitting of Parliament, and had water and sewerage networks funded by the World Bank.
36 For example using the word “save” instead of “serve” in relation to the order, paragraph 3.
37 Two human rights lawyers were consulted, 20 and
38 The Standard,
39 The Chronicle,
40 The Chronicle,
41 Interview with the Mayor of
42 Interviews with affected businessmen,
44 The Chronicle,
46 “State to relocate informal traders”.
47 Figures in the box following are taken from The Chronicle, 2 June and
49 In the last few months an estimated US$ 400,000 has been spent on military hardware by the Government – almost half of what is realistically predicted as likely forex inflows for 2005: The Zimbabwean, ibid, page 17.
50 Interview with Kothari on BBC World,
53 Brian Raftopoulos, “The Battle for the cities”, in Financial
54 Parliamentary Debates,
55 While those displaced will presumably be able to register and vote in rural areas in due course, recent elections have shown that it is easier to intimidate and rig in the rural setting.
56 The Chronicle,
57In the first few days of the operation in late May, in Glen View
and White Cliff Farm, some groups tried resistance and were quickly subdued. The
58 The Chronicle,
59 The Chronicle,
60 Personal interviews,
61 Miloon Kothari, UN special rapporteur on the right to adequate
housing, quoted by Associated Press,
63 Raftopoulos, Zimbabwe Independent, ibid.
64 Statement made in Parliament,
65 BBC World, Focus on
66 The Chronicle,
67 The Herald,
68 For documentation of political abuse of food in rural areas ahead of the 2005 election, see Solidarity Peace Trust, Out for the Count: democracy in Zimbabwe; May 2005, in both video and report format.
69The Sunday Times (UK) 5 June 2005; while of course there are major differences in the ideologies of Pol Pot, Ceausescu and Mugabe, there is a basic truth in the idea that a poor, ignorant, ruralised population is a politically compliant one.
70 Godfrey Kanyenze, labour economist, quoted in The Financial
71 This was dismissed as nonsense by the opposition at the time; in
keeping with most nations around the world,
72 See previous section for more comment on this.
73 A P Reeler, Compensation for gross human rights violations, in Legal Forum, 1998, vol 10, no 2.
74CCJP, The Man in the Middle and Civil War in Rhodesia, republished
75 The “gukurahundi” era of the 1980s resulted in movements of thousands of people as they fled murder and persecution in rural areas: that issue is not dealt with in this report.
76 ZBC TV News Bulletin,
77 Trudy Stevenson, MP for Hatcliffe reminded the House of these
facts in the parliamentary debate on
78Cited in The Daily Telegraph, (
79 See video by Solidarity Peace Trust, “Driving out the Filth” for graphic pictures of Caledonia Farm.
80 Interview with displaced settler,
81 The resettled areas in peri-urban
82 The Herald,
83 See Appendix Three for questionnaire. Most of the information obtained has yet to be analysed, and interviews of the displaced continue to date.
84 Aeneas Chigwedere, Education Minister, made this comment in
defence of the evictions on
85 The Herald or The Chronicle of the date in question is the source of events, unless otherwise indicated.
86 See appendices for full speech as published in The Herald,
87 Interview, HR lawyer,
88 This figure is unrealistic. Sources on the ground in the suburbs
claim a minimum of 10,000 displaced in