THE NGO NETWORK ALLIANCE PROJECT - an online community for Zimbabwean activists  
 View archive by sector


Back to Index

This article participates on the following special index pages:

  • Operation Murambatsvina - Countrywide evictions of urban poor - Index of articles

  • NGOs present damning blitz report to donors
    Augustine Mukaro/ Grace Kombora, The Zimbabwe Independent
    July 22, 2005

    NON-GOVERNMENTAL organisations are set to present a damning report on the impact of Operation Murambatsvina to a donors' round-table today, a move that could shape the international community's response to Zimbabwe's appeal for money to finance the reconstruction programme.

    United Nations special envoy on Human Settlement Issues in Zimbabwe, Anna Kajimulo Tibaijuka, presented her findings on the clean-up campaign to the UN secretary-general Kofi Annan and Zimbabwe ambassador to the US Boniface Chidyausiku on Wednesday. The report is expected to be made public either today or Monday.

    Annan in a statement this week said he was becoming "increasingly concerned" about housing evictions and demolitions in Zimbabwe. Analysts have said Annan's statement set the tone for the main report which is expected to be a major indictment of the government.

    This comes as the UNDP office in Harare this week announced that it had started to co-ordinate humanitarian efforts to help those affected by the tsunami. It has already set aside US$100 000. The UNDP office also said it would continue to engage the government on the humanitarian implications of the clean-up campaign to "ensure that the government adheres to its international obligations as enshrined in the relevant covenants".

    The UNDP said a UN Habitat programme officer in Harare would be appointed soon. The post would be filled by a Zimbabwean.

    "The post needs someone who is familiar with this country, so a Zimbabwean national will be suitable for the post," the UNDP said.

    Excerpts of a survey carried out by ActionAid International-Southern Africa Partnership Programme in collaboration with the Combined Harare Residents Association show that the widely condemned operation led to the destruction of urban-poor dwellings, livelihoods, vending stalls and the confiscation of goods and property of informal traders worth millions of dollars.

    "It is estimated that over 55 000 households in 52 sites across the country (were destroyed) and between 250 000-500 000 people have been rendered homeless or forced to migrate to the rural areas," the report says.

    "Furthermore, more than 30 000 people were arrested and fined in the process."

    The survey, which was conducted in 26 of Harare's 45 wards, reaching 14 137 homesteads, shows that the worst affected victims were the traditionally vulnerable groups. Traditionally vulnerable groups include households hosting orphans and the chronically ill, as well as female, elderly and child-headed households.

    "Ninety-seven percent of the visited homesteads in the 26 wards were affected by the operation in varying proportions and different ways. Effects of the operation included loss of accommodation, livelihoods resulting in children dropping out from school," the report says.

    The report also said 73% of urban dwellers were engaged in informal trading prior to the clean-up, implying that they were adversely affected.

    "The primary source of the livelihoods that was disrupted by the operation include tuckshops, flea markets, fruit and vegetable vending, offering accommodation, cross border traders and other small traders in which the traditionally vulnerable groups were mainly involved," the report says.

    Please credit if you make use of material from this website. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.