Land was one of the core grievances.

ZIMSEC O Level History Notes: The Struggle for Independence in Colonial Zimbabwe:African Grievances against Colonial Rule: Economic Grievances

  • The racial division of the land was the main cause of the liberation struggle
  • All Rhodesian Prime Ministers were farmers
  • The institution of the Land Apportionment Act in 1930 saw Africans being evicted from their land to be resettled in reserves which were very unproductive
  • Although the Land Apportionment Act 1930 was amended about 60 times, it failed to address the key issues which was unfair land distribution
  • The Native Land Husbandry Act was the amendment to the Land Apportionment Act but it contributed the more to the resistance of African anger
  • Africans were now required to own 5 head of cattle and 8 acres of land per family
  • Excess cattle were sold by the white settlers at low prices
  • Native lands were overpopulated and over used whilst whites lands were underutilized
  • Africans were highly discriminated against in their work places
  • They were given low paying and high labour demanding jobs whilst their European counterparts enjoyed white collar and supervisory jobs
  • Acts to ensure Africans were not recognized as workers were put in place such as the Masters and Servants Act (1901) and the industrial Conciliation Act (1934)
  • Africans were also not allowed to form trade unions until 1959 which could forward their grievances to their employers
  • Africans were not allowed to strike under the Law and Order Maintenance Act of 1960
  • Under the act strike was an offense punishable by imprisonment or death
  • Africans earned very low wages and there was a huge gap between Africans and Europeans
  • In 1974 the average wage for Africans was $266 and for Europeans was $3 580

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