Large Scale Land Acquisition and Its Implication on Rural Livelihoods: The Chisumbanje Ethanol Plant Case, Zimbabwe.
Whether viewed as “land grabbing”, “large scale land acquisition” or “agriculture investment for development”, this trajectory has seen vast tracks of land being outsourced for non-food projects such as bio-fuel production. Majority of farmers who reside in the rural areas have their land earmarked for such projects (bio-fuel production) and resultantly they are left to swallow the bitter pill of the effects of large scale land deals. In most studies done in Africa commonly cited benefits of large scale farming such as employment or income generating opportunities to the local communities has fallen far short of expectations. Downsides have often stood in stark contrast to the reported and anticipated benefits of such land deals. The fieldwork for this study was carried out in Chisumbanje communal area, Zimbabwe in July 2013.The study seeks to explore how the introduction of large scale commercial farming by Green Fuel Company affected the community in every aspect of their lives ranging from loss of livelihood strategies, dispossession, displacement and loss of social and economic status. The research assessed the impact of the Chisumbanje large scale land acquisition on the community`s livelihood, examined the community`s perception and response towards the project. The methods used for col-lecting data were, semi-structured interviews, focus group discussions with the locals who included men, women and the youths as well as the Observation method. The research answers the question: In what ways and to what extent has large scale land acquisition altered the livelihoods of the Chisumbanje community? In answering this, it adopted two of Bernstein’s key questions in agrarian political economy “who owns what” and “who gets what”. Analytical tools provided through Sustainable Rural Livelihoods framework and Scott’s weapons of the weak theory were also applied. Empirical study of the Chi-sumbanje case shows that there are no convincing positive impacts for the locals, but only a long list of downsides.
|Keywords||livelihoods, large scale land acquisition, displacement, political economy|
|Thesis Advisor||Visser, Oane|
|Series||Agrarian and Environmental Studies (AES)|
Mandihlare, Chipo Mildred. (2013, December 13). Large Scale Land Acquisition and Its Implication on Rural Livelihoods: The Chisumbanje Ethanol Plant Case, Zimbabwe.. Agrarian and Environmental Studies (AES). Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/2105/15228