Journal of Social Development in Africa

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Internal Displacement and Forced Migration within Zimbabwe: An Overview

Maheshvari Naidu, Abigail Benhura


Forced internal displacement is a tenacious social ill that has gripped many communities in many sub Saharan African countries and Kadane (2011, p.49) contends that internal displacement is “a symptom of state dysfunction”. This paper argues that, contrary to the picture portrayed by the government of Zimbabwe, internal displacement, as one form of (forced) migration within a country's borders, is more prevalent in the country than is at first discernable. The paper offers an overview of the current scholarship on the forced mobility of particular categories of people in Zimbabwe and critically sketches and contextualizes the work has been done in the area. The paper in turn argues that while education for the internally displaced people (IDPS) is a critical area of concern for organisations like UNICEF; the fact that the mobility and migration of IDPS are rendered invisible in Zimbabwe, makes the basic human rights of IDPs and the children of the IDPs such as their right to (access)education, easier to ignore by the Zimbabwean government.

Keywords: Migration, displacement, settlements, mobilities, livelihoods

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