Ruzivo Trust

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A Centre for Knowledge Excellence

What  is  the  2015/6  Rainfall  up  to?

Prosper B. Matondi
28  January,  2016

Zimbabwe  is  experiencing  a  debilitating  below  normal  rainfall  in  the  2015/6  farming  season that  comes  in  the  background  of  less  than  optimal  rains  in  the  2014/5  season.   The  casual  talk daily  has  been  the  state  of  rains  throughout  the  country  in  rural,  urban  areas,  mining  towns and  so  on.   The  impacts  of  this  season's  "El  Niño"  has  been  classified  by  meteorologists  and climatologists  as  the  strongest  on  record  and  have  been  felt  across  the  country  in  the  form  of record  breaking  temperatures.

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The Unsung Heroes of Our Time

By Getrude Gwenzi

We always praise the modern superwomen, those we look up to for their various social accomplishments. These are the powerful females we see making a huge difference in the work place and in our everyday spaces. We have forgotten our grandmothers and mothers in the rural areas who are making a difference every day of their lives. Their contribution is not spoken of or written about because it is not “glamorous” or open to the public eye. They might not be wearing power suits going to important meetings or clinching deals with important clients but their contribution to our society is significant.

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Natural resources mayhem in Beitbridge Ward 15: Who is responsible?

Theophilus T. Mudzindiko (Social Ecologist and Natural Resources Governance Officer)

29 January 2016

Preliminary findings from the research that Ruzivo is conducting in Ward 15 of Beitbridge district in Matabeleland south province on the mopane worm value chain are quite intriguing. Local communities were quick to cast blame on outsiders who poach their resources (deforestation and harvesting premature mopane worms). To an ordinary ear this information is very compelling and easy to accept at first value but to an ecologist it insights a whole genre of other questions.

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Defining the Africa we want: Inaugural Conference on Land Policy in Africa

The inaugural Conference on Land Policy in Africa is being held at the African Union (AU) Conference Centre here in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and it runs from the 11th to the 14th of November 2014. The conference is organized by the Land Policy Initiative, a joint initiative of the African Union Commission (AUC), the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), and the African Development Bank (AfDB), under the theme “The next decade of land policy in Africa: ensuring agricultural development and inclusive growth”.

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African Agrarian Question in the 21st century: Land grabbing and agribusiness

The conflicts over the control of natural resources have been a constant in Africa’s history. At the beginning of the century, however, a set of new processes of transformation of the rural areas involving new and old actors are taking place in the continent. Two main land grabbing processes have to be differentiated. On the one hand, those links to agribusinesses to produce crops with multiple uses (e.g. soy, sugar cane, oil palm, corn, etc.) for export, replacing former agricultural production systems, with serious risks to food security. And, on the other hand, those linked to extractive industries (e.g. oil, gas, biofuel, mines, forest production, etc.), expanding the frontiers of resources with serious risks to the ownership rights and use of the territories by the local populations and the sustainability of the local ecosystems. Cheap land and fairly easy access to water make Africa attractive for industrial agriculture. Investors see Africa as an “un-crowded space of opportunities,” and the prospect of accessing abundant water resources is a focal point in business plans.

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Smallholders can make it big in agriculture: humanizing the Chisumbanje ethanol project, Chipinge, Zimbabwe

The Chisumbanje ethanol project has captured the emotions, imaginations and captivated Zimbabweans to dialogue on broader economic development and market governance.  Yet, underpinning this intense dialogue are real matters of livelihoods and the meaning of land for people. There are so many complex matters associated with the project, to the extent that revisiting its foundation becomes imperative. Yet, at the stage of its implementation, it becomes retrogressive to re-examine it with a view for redesigning but rather towards reshaping it for it to be a public good for Zimbabwe.

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