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Chronology for Europeans in Zimbabwe

Publisher Minorities at Risk Project
Publication Date 2004
Cite as Minorities at Risk Project, Chronology for Europeans in Zimbabwe, 2004, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/469f38f8c.html [accessed 26 July 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.
Date(s) Item
1837 Ndebele centers in Western Transvaal (South Africa) were attacked by Afrikaners. The Ndebele began to migrate north.
Mar 1838 Ndebele divided into two main migration parties. One faction went directly to present day Matabeleland in Zimbabwe.
Jun 1839 Ndebele arrived in Matabeleland.
1841 Ndebele began raiding Sotho/Tswana territories from their new base in Matabeleland. Throughout the 1840s, there were Ndebele-Kololo wars along the Zambezi in which the Ndebele were unsuccessful.
Jan 8, 1853 The Ndebele signed a treaty with Transvaal Afrikaners.
1879 Jesuit missionaries arrived in Matabeleland.
1891 The British Order-in-Council declared protectorates over Matabeleland, Mashonaland, and Bechuanaland (later Botswana).
Jul 1893 Ndebele raided Shona near Ft. Victoria.
Sep 1893 Beginning of the Ndebele War.
May 3, 1895 Present-day Zimbabwe was proclaimed Rhodesia.
Mar 20, 1896 The Ndebele revolt against Britain began. The Shona revolt began 14 June and the two groups waged simultaneous, though separate, wars. The British established control over the Ndebele for the first time and the Ndebele kingdom was effectively destroyed. Ndebele communities relocated onto reserves.
Jul 1897 The last Ndebele rebel was captured. Both rebellions ended.
1901 The administrations of Matabeleland and Mashonaland were combined under W.H. Milton.
1914 The Matabele National Home Society was created. It was a movement for an autonomous Ndebele homeland, but it failed to influence government policy.
1922 Voters in a referendum favored a responsible government as a British crown colony over union with South Africa.
1951 The Native Land Husbandry Act was passed. It transferred authority to allocate land from the government chiefs to native communities. There was widespread resistance to the law because it undermined the authority of African leaders. Those affected tended to ignore the act and carried on as before.
Feb 26, 1959 The government declared a state of emergency and proscribed the ANC (African National Council). The Unlawful Organizations Act is passed.
Jan 1, 1960 The National Democratic Party was founded as a successor to the ANC.
Jul 19, 1960 The arrest of NDP leaders led to bloody rioting.
Oct 1960 The Law and Order Maintenance Act was introduced.
1961 A referendum endorsed a new constitution creating dual voting rolls. The NDP was banned and was immediately reconstituted as the Zimbabwean African People's Union (ZAPU) led by Ndebele Joshua Nkomo.
Mar 1962 The Rhodesian Front (RF), an all-white party, was founded.
Sep 20, 1962 ZAPU was banned.
1963 The British government established "five principles" guaranteeing African civil rights and unimpeded progress toward majority rule as a precondition for independence. Northern Rhodesia seceded and the federation was formally dissolved in December. The Zimbabwe African National Union was formed by ZAPU dissidents and led by Ndabaningi Sithole. The People's Caretaker Council (PCC) was formed as a ZAPU front.
Apr 1964 Ian Smith displaced Field as Prime Minister.
Aug 1964 ZANU, the PCC and the African Daily News were banned. Highfield was declared an emergency area.
Nov 1965 Smith declared a unilateral declaration of Independence from Britain.
Apr 1966 ZANU launched its first guerrilla attack from Zambia. Also in 1966, the United Nations Security Council voted for mandatory sanctions on selected Rhodesian exports and imports.
Aug 1967 ZAPU and South Africa's ANC launched a guerrilla campaign in the Northwest.
1968 The U.N. established comprehensive mandatory sanctions against Southern Rhodesia.
1969 A two-proposition referendum approved the establishment of a Republic and endorsed a new constitution. The government outlined a policy of parity calling for the total segregation of races. The Land Tenure Act was adopted which imposed segregated land occupancy.
Mar 2, 1970 Rhodesia was formally, but illegally, declared a Republic.
Oct 1971 FROLIZI (Front for the Liberation of Zimbabwe) was formed.
1972 A new phase of the guerrilla war opened with stepped-up activity by ZANU. ZANU and ZAPU were supported by the Shona and Ndebele ethnic groups, respectively.
Jan 1973 Rhodesia closed its border with Zambia. It reopened it in February, but Zambia kept its side closed.
1974 Leaders of ZANU, ZAPU, and FROLIZI announced their acceptance of the ANC as an umbrella organization.
1975 ANC split into two wings, one loyal to Muzorewa, the other loyal to Nkomo. Robert Mugabe consolidated leadership over ZANU.
Feb 1975 Smith met with Nkomo, Abel Muzorewa, a bishop, and Sithole to set up a formal constitutional congress.
Mar 19, 1976 Smith-Nkomo talks broke down.
Oct 1976 Nkomo and Mugabe announced the formation of the Patriotic Front.
Dec 1976 The Conservative African Party was founded by Jeremiah Chirau. It had little popular support.
Apr 1977 The Land Tenure Amendment Act was amended to open some white rural areas to Africans. It was repealed in 1979.
Jan 1978 The government issued strict censorship laws to control reportage on the civil war.
Feb 1978 Smith announced an agreement on an eight-point plan calling for universal adult suffrage and a 100 member parliament with 28 seats reserved for whites.
Mar 8, 1978 Smith, Sithole, Muzorewa and Chirau formally signed an agreement for the transition to majority rule by the end of 1978. The multiracial government assumed full powers on 30 March.
May 2, 1978 The Rhodesian government lifted the ban on ZAPU and ZANU political activity in the country and called for guerrillas to agree to a cease-fire. Guerrillas continued their resistance throughout the summer.
Aug 14, 1978 Nkomo and Smith met secretly in Lusaka with the Nigerian Foreign Minister.
Sep 10, 1978 Smith announced the imposition of limited martial law over one-fifth of the country and warned of a crack-down against supporters of the Patriotic Front.
Oct 7 - 20, 1978 Smith and Sithole visited the U.S. unofficially. They were joined by Muzorewa and Chirau on 13 October. On 10 October, the Rhodesian government announced plans to end all remaining discriminatory laws. Rhodesian forces began major raids into Mozambique and Zambia killing up to 1500 people.
1979 Economic difficulties, declining white morale, and guerrilla inroads into rural areas led Smith to fashion an "internal settlement." A black puppet regime was set up under the leadership of Muzorewa who was unable to improve conditions for Africans, gain international recognition, or end the guerrilla war.
Sep 1 - Dec 31, 1979 Pressures on all sides in the conflict forced all parties to participate in the Lancaster House constitutional conference, under the aegis of Britain, which led to independence the following year.
1980 The creation of a largely-Shona specialist brigade (the Fifth) drew criticism. A general amnesty was granted to all participants in the conflict. During the seven-year independence struggle, 20,000, mostly blacks, were killed. Thousands of whites emigrates at independence. Most went to South Africa.
Feb 1980 Elections held. Three main parties contested the elections: ZAPU-PF, led by Nkomo; ZANU-PF, led by Mugabe; and the UANC (United African National Council), led by Muzorewa. ZANU-PF won 57 of the 80 African seats in the house, receiving 63% of the votes. ZAPU won 20 seats and became a minor partner in the government. UNAC received 3 seats. In a power-sharing arrangement, whites were guaranteed 20 seats in the house. The RF, restyled the Republican Front, won all 20 seats in an earlier election.
Apr 18, 1980 Zimbabwe achieved independence. Following independence, the question of what to do with the three armies (ZAPU, ZANU, and the former government) arose. There were clashes between guerrilla groups near Bulawayo in which several hundred are killed. By late 1981, however, the integration of the forces appears to have been successfully accomplished.
Jan 1981 Nkomo was demoted to a lesser cabinet position after the discovery of a large cache of illegal arms on property belonging to ZAPU in Matabeleland.
1981 The RF reconstituted itself the Conservative Alliance of Zimbabwe (CAZ). Its negativity since independence caused many within the party to defect.
1982 Dissidents from the former ZAPU army perpetrated numerous indiscriminate acts of violence. The government launched an anti-dissident campaign by deploying a Task Force in Matabeleland. Mugabe held Nkomo responsible for ZAPU actions and the worsening situation.
1983 A CAZ faction sympathetic to Mugabe's government broke away to form the Independent Zimbabwe Group. Serious allegations of atrocities against innocent civilians were made against the Fifth Brigade as it sought to put down the ZAPU dissidents and protect the important, mostly white, commercial farming sector.
1984 The Fifth Brigade again perpetrated systematic killings of villagers in Matabeleland. It also destroyed food supplies, closed shops, and confiscated food from travelers. Matabeleland had been in the midst of a three-year drought. It was alleged the Fifth Brigade gave food relief only to those who could supply a ZANU-PF party card.
Aug 1984 A new party constitution was adopted by ZANU-PF. It committed itself to socialism and endorsed achieving a one-party Marxist-Leninist state.
Jun 1985 Elections were held. ZANU-PF wins 64 of 80 seats, gaining six. ZAPU retained its Matabeleland seats, but lost five others. UNAC failed to gain any seats. Following elections, the government pursued its goal of a one-party state, with reprisals against supporters of minority parties. The government continued its campaign against ZAPU rebels, but unity talks were pursued.
1987 Mugabe abruptly abandoned the unity talks on the grounds that they had been stalemated too long. A resurgence of violence in Matabeleland and further measures against ZAPU's political activities followed the cancellation of the talks.
Nov 1987 A particularly brutal massacre in Matabeleland and the worsening situation on the eastern border led to a unity agreement between ZANU-PF and ZAPU. Approximately 10,000 were killed in the clashes between security forces and the people of Matabeleland during the mid-1980s.
Dec 1987 An agreement to merge the two parties was signed by Mugabe and Nkomo. It was ratified by ZAPU and ZANU-PF in April 1988. The new party was led by Mugabe with Nkomo as one of two vice-presidents. Nkomo was given a senior position in the new cabinet and other ZAPU officials were given government posts.
Apr 1988 A second general amnesty was granted, and many who had committed major atrocities during the early-1980s were pardoned. The government granted the amnesty with the explanation that all acts that were committed were under the umbrella of "acts of war." The situation in Matabeleland rapidly improved.
Sep 1988 Anti-government protests by students led to many arrests. Rising unemployment and government corruption were catalysts to the protest.
Oct 1988 Edgar Tekere was expelled from ZANU-PF for his denunciation of the party. This led to further student protest. He later formed a new party, the Zimbabwe Unity Movement (ZUM). He had strong support in Manicaland province and in Harare and Bulawayo.
1989 Student protests against the government continue. Continued clashes between students and police led to a closing of the University between October 1990-April 1991. Student protest was the most visible sign of wide discontent throughout the country.
1990 Mugabe abandoned his ambition of a one-party state. He also abandoned socialism and embarked on a five-year economic reform program backed by the World Bank. He also lifted the state of emergency that has been in effect since Smith's declaration of independence in 1965. Ndebele still felt resentment against the government for the atrocities committed against them the 1980s. There were increasing calls for more autonomy for the Matabeleland region. A constitutional amendment was passed which allowed the compulsory acquisition of white-owned land. In 1980, about 6000 white farmers controlled 38 million acres (about half the arable land in the country). By 1991, they owned only 27 million acres. Mugabe had resettled about 5200 black families and planned to acquire one-half of white-owned land by the year 2000.
1991 At least 80 and as many as 400 people were said to have disappeared in the mid-80s during the crisis in Matabeleland. Little progress had been made by 1991 in finding them or explaining their whereabouts. In January, Agriculture Minister Witness Mangwende told white commercial farmers that the government would not negotiate on its controversial plan to transfer more land to blacks.
Jun 1991 Nkomo warned "undesirable elements" in the white community to leave Zimbabwe. He was reacting to reports that a group of whites in Bulawayo was planning to march in the city in August to commemorate the defeat of the Ndebele kingdom by white colonial settlers 100 years previously.
Oct 21, 1991 Students rioted in Harare against alleged white racists.
1992 The Land Acquisition Act was approved by the government. It allowed the government to seize white-owned farms with little compensation and no right of appeal. Whites own one-half of the arable land in the country and make up only 1% of the population. Power and food shortages and increasing unemployment have severely decreased Mugabe's popularity. Matabeleland suffered from a severe lack of water and was in the midst of a ten-year drought. The government had been reluctant to do anything to improve the situation. The mysterious deaths of Ndebele intellectuals in car accidents increased tensions between Ndebele and the Shona. Some Ndebele called for compensation to families of victims of the early-80s massacres. Ndebele leaders continued to call for greater autonomy for Matabeleland. Some Ndebele looked to their Nguni allies in South Africa as their best route to becoming part of a majority voice. They are culturally close to the Zulus of South Africa, but politically and ideologically close to South Africa's ANC. In July, several parties (UANC, ZANU-Ndonga, ZUM and CAZ) united in opposition. In October, black and white liberals formed the Forum for Democratic Reform.
May 1993 Mugabe announced that 70 big commercial farms were to be expropriated by the state for redistribution to black farmers. A racial campaign against Zimbabwe's whites was launched by radical blacks seeking to win economic control from them. They had the tacit support of Mugabe.
Dec 1993 Matabeleland's top legislator Sydney Malunga, Matabeleland's governor, and the mayor of Bulawayo alleged discrimination in jobs and training against the Ndebele. They also claimed some Shona in ZANU-PF were preventing Ndebeles from getting a fair share of the economic development, adding that the Shonas felt threatened by the merger of ZANU and ZAPU six years before.
May 1994 Black Anglicans protested the appointment of a white priest as the church's new vicar-general, alleging racism.
Sep 1994 A black business lobby was launched. It demanded a program of affirmative action for blacks.
Dec 1994 The Federal Party was formed in Bulawayo. Its chief spokesman Twoboy Jubane said a doctrine of federalism was supported as the only way to end the tribal domination imposed over Matabeleland by the Shona. Elections were scheduled for 1995.
Jan 6, 1995 About 1000 blacks marched in Harare against alleged racism by banks and other white-controlled businesses. No violence or arrests were reported.
Feb 1995 One of the grievances of the Ndebele against the government was the perception that the government is reluctant to provide funds to channel water to Matabeleland's capital, Bulawayo, from the Zambezi.
Dec 1995 Farm laborers were reportedly ill-treated, suffering from poor wages, poor working conditions, and inadequate housing. Most protest against conditions is localized rather than national. Many large farm-owners reportedly maintain colonial attitudes towards black Africans. (Inter Press Service (IPS), 12/20/1995)
Jun 1996 The crisis of land shortages worsens with thousands of urbanites driven to the rural areas after job entrenchment. The government lacks the money to buy the land and commercial farmers remain resistant to the idea of selling off their lands (Xinhua, 6/16/1996).
Mar 1997 An affirmative action bill targeting the business sector was to be soon introduced. Critics said it would increase racial tensions and entrench corruption. The Bill would extend prosecution for discrimination beyond public services to the denial of personal finance and refusal to sell property Black businesses have been lobbying to exclude white businesses from state contracts and to grant loans to black businessmen at a preferential rate. (The Times, 3/5/1997)
Oct 1997 White farmers had to be evacuated from a prosperous tobacco growing region after hundreds of striking workers ransacked their farms. About 200 men were arrested after farmers organized security operations in the area. The out of work men moved from farm to farm in the region, sometimes forcing workers to join them and threatening to kill the farmers. Millions of dollars of damage was done. (The Times, 10/11/1997)
Nov 1997 The government launched a bid to reassure white farmers that it would not embark on arbitrarily forced nationalization of land. Over the past three months, President Mugabe has threatened to confiscate white-owned land without compensation. He said Britain should pay for the land as the former colonizers. (Deutsche Presse Agentur (DPA), 11/4/1997)
Nov 6, 1997 Britain rejected Zimbabwe's demand for 150 million pounds to help pay for land reform. President Mugabe recently said the government would seize 1772 white-owned farms covering 4.8 million acres which is 44% of the area cultivated by commercial farmers. The president also threatened to abolish parts of the constitution if they prohibited the land confiscation scheme. (DPA)
Nov 21, 1997 Thousands of farmers held meetings across the country to protest against the moves to throw many of them off their land in order to give the land to blacks. (Daily Telegraph)
Dec 1997 People took to the streets in protest at increases in sales and income taxes. The taxes were imposed to fund a controversial benefits package for guerrilla war veterans. (DPA)
Dec 29, 1997 Commercial farmers submitted their final appeals against the confiscation of their lands. The Commercial Farmers Union leader Nick Swanepoel said he was optimist that productive farms would not be seized. (New York Times)
Jan 1998 The Information Minister said that seizing white-owned land was for their own protection against squatters and that the increase in consumer prices was a "plot" by white farmers. Economists said the government's actions on land reform were the main cause of a dramatic slump in the economy in the last three months. (DPA1/14/1998). After pressure from the World Bank and the European Union, the government signaled it would rescind its plans to seize white-owned land. Mugabe promised the institutions that he would undertake land reform under rule of law and agreed that spending on land reform would not jeopardize the fiscal deficit or result in the loss of agriculture production. (BBV, 1/19/1998)
Jan 19, 1998 Rioting erupted over the sudden increase in the price of basic commodities. Thirty thousand people demonstrated. The government's moves towards land confiscation resulted in a 45% drop in the value of Zimbabwe's currency, a sharp rise in interest rates, a stock market crash and the cancellation of billion of dollars in investment. (DPA, 1/20/1998)
Jan 21, 1998 The Reserve Bank said it had established foreign credit lines worth $300 million with the aim of stabilizing the Zimbabwean dollar. Mugabe said he would impose a state of emergency if riots continued. (BBC)
Jan 23, 1998 the Commercial Farmers Union offered a land reform plan to the government. The Union insists that the government compensate farmers fairly, that the ruling ZANU party is removed from the land reform process, and revoke the list of 1480 farms listed for compulsory acquisition. The Union said white farmers had long conceded that the land tenure system is untenable and reforms needed. (DPA)
Feb 5, 1998 Agriculture Minister Kumbriai Kangai said that the government would seize farms of whites who used racist or derogatory language against the government. (DPA)
Feb 11, 1998 The opposition National Democratic Union lodged an application to the Supreme Court challenging the government's designation of commercial farms. President Mark Muchabaiwa said the party was seeking an interdiction suspending the designation process until a compensation ration is agreed upon and the viability of the plan assessed. (Africa News Service (ANS))
Feb 27, 1998 The Congress of Trade Unions called for a nationwide strike on March 3-4 to demand an end to economic mismanagement under Mugabe. The strike took place and was peaceful.
Mar 7, 1998 The Zimbabwean Farmers' Union welcomed a decision by the government not to nationalize lands belonging to white farmers. (BBC)
Mar 23, 1998 Mugabe again railed against white farmers and said he would confiscate their farms within the year. Many within the ruling ZANU-PF are opposed to his rule. MP Dzikamayi Mauhaire was demoted from the party for urging that the president be limited to two terms in office. Speaker Cyril Ndebele said that Mauhaire could not be censured because the constitution guaranteed free speech in parliament. (BBC)
Apr 18, 1998 At Independence Day celebrations, Mugabe vowed to crack down on violent protest. He directed his words at the Congress of Trade Unions which has organized two comprehensive strikes in the past five months to protest new taxes and high inflation. (DPA)
Jun 1998 Several hundred black subsistence farmers reportedly moved in on three white-owned farms in Morondera region in the north. They complained that the government's land reform program was moving too slowly. They were careful to move onto uncultivated land and said they wished to share with and not displace the white farmers. (Christian Science Monitor, 8/12/1998). The IMF approved a $175 million standby facility to keep the government afloat. Unemployment in the country is at 25-30%. (The Economist, 8/15/1998)
Jun 19, 1998 White farmers from east of Harare (Marondera) awaited government officials trying to persuade squatters to move off white-owned farms they occupied this week. The squatters told the farmers that their action is in protest against the failure of Mugabe to meet promises that he would turn land over to black peasants (DPA).
Jun 29, 1998 The squatters moved off white-owned farmland in Marondera after tens days. The government had at first refused to remove the men, but later negotiated their removal. (DPA). Confusion, corruption and political infighting surrounded the government's plan to resettle thousands of peasants on white-owned farms. Since Mugabe announced that farms would be seized in October 1997, he has alternatively threatened white farmers and agreed to pressure from western lenders to give up the confiscation without compensation scheme. (BBC, 7/8/1998)
Aug 16, 1998 The Commercial Farmers Union, comprised of 4000 mostly white farmers, held its annual congress. The Union warned that the government's plans for land reform threatened to tip the already fragile economy over the edge. "Land invasions" have spread throughout the country since late June and diplomats said the actions are politically instigated and coordinated by local functionaries from the ruling party. Commercial farmers are the highest earners of foreign currency and employ hundreds of thousands of people. (The Sunday Times)
Sep 1, 1998 White farmers were assured by the Ministry of Agriculture that they could ignore last year's listing of nearly 1500 farms for confiscation. His remarks were seen as an admission that the government had finally abandoned its plans to confiscate the farms. The government has not followed up on its "compulsory acquisition list" since it was issued in November 1997. Zimbabwe is to host an international conference where it hopes to persuade donors to give $1.2 billion towards a massive land resettlement program. International donors have been reluctant to give the government money for the program since it entailed taking land from farmers without compensating them. (DPA)
Sep 12, 1998 The World Bank promised money for land reform provided it is detailed and decentralized. The government intends to buy half of the land belonging to white farmers to resettle 150,000 black families over five years. The Bank demanded transparency from the government before it hands over the money, so the government will embark on a two-year "conception period" to pave the way for reforms. (Indian Ocean Newsletter (ION); Africa News Service (ANS), 9/18/1999).
Nov 13, 1998 President Mugabe again ordered the confiscation of white-owned farms. Letters to over 800 farmers signed by the Agriculture Minister said the land became state land as soon as the letter was received. The IMF canceled a $55 million loan following the report.
Nov 14, 1998 President Mugabe reportedly retracted his confiscation order after negotiations with the IMF. The government is supposed to place a statement in international newspapers committing itself to a land reform program that will be run under rule of law and not destroy the commercial farming sector. (The Times)
Nov 16, 1998 Armed veterans barricaded farmers inside their farmyards and threatened to kill them. Operations on about 20 farms have been hampered by a campaign of violence, harassment and intimidation that the authorities have done little to contain. Two whites were murdered and an elderly couple stabbed last week in Enterprise Valley. Since squatters arrive there, farm laborers have been beaten and ordered not to go to work, farm implements have been stolen and maize planted in the farmers' fields. (The Times)
Jan 31, 1999 The judiciary demanded that Mugabe publicly condemn the illegal arrest and torture of two journalists who reported an attempted coup against his government. (DPA)
Feb 5, 1999 The National Chairman of Land Reform and Resettlement Committee Joseph Msika said the cabinet had endorsed the establishment of a fund to manage the resettlement program. A specialized technical support unit was set up to prepare action plans for the implementation of the program sponsored by the UNDP. (Xinhua News Agency)
Feb 8, 1999 President Mugabe said that the three Supreme Court justices who publicly reprimanded him in January should resign. He also threatened the press and appeared to support the army's arrest and torture of the journalists the justices were supporting. Mugabe further accused white journalists and rights activists of plotting against him. (New York Times)
Feb 18, 1999 The government publicly backed down on the seizure of 841 white-owned farms. Two weeks previously, the special land court rejected attempts by the government to have the confiscation of 520 farms formally confirmed. (DPA)
Feb 22, 1999 President Mugabe delivered an attack on whites, the judiciary, the press and western embassies in a television interview. (The Times)
Mar 2, 1999 The Trade Unions Congress and civic groups announced they would form a new political party. Analysts said the constitution in heavily in favor of the ruling party, but admitted that the new party would pose a serious threat to the ruling ZANI-PF. (IPS)
Mar 13, 1999 The National Constitutional Assembly held peaceful marches in Harare and Bulawayo to enhance awareness and participation of the masses in the constitutional development process. (Xinhua)
May 1999 The government and commercial farmers agreed on land reform following cabinet approval of a framework plan. The new Inception Phase Framework Plan calls for the resettlement of 77,700 rural farm families on one million hectares over two years. The World Bank is to provide $5 million for the project. (ANS, 5/4/1999; BBC, 5/19/1999)
May 29, 1999 Mugabe said Zimbabwe's troubles were caused by a vast international plot by whites, multinational corporations, and the British and U.S. governments. He again reasserted his intentions to confiscate white-owned land and vowed to ignore western pressure to carry out land reforms under rule of law. (DPA)
Jul 5, 1999 Joshua Nkomo was buried to a funeral oration from President Mugabe that attacked whites, scorned the IMF and said western democracy was not compatible with Zimbabwe;s culture. There were fears that Nkomo's death would unleash renewed conflict between the Shona and Ndebele.
Aug 6, 1999 Indigenous commercial farmers whose farms were being auctioned because of debt servicing problems received a reprieve and the government has set up a four member cabinet committee to assess the situation. It ordered the Agriculture Finance Corporation to stop foreclosures until the findings of the committee were revealed. (ANS)
Sep 9, 1999 Farmers said that they expected higher output this season because of the confidence injected into the sector by the government's resolve to implement land reform in a fair and transparent manner, including full compensation for land. (ANS)
Nov 11, 1999 Zimbabwe was nearly paralyzed as hundreds of thousands heeded a call by the national labor movement to stage a strike in protest against dramatic price hikes and the government's mishandling of the economic crisis. (DPA)

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