Accepted paper:

Mining and the transformation of rural communities in North Western Province, Zambia: the case of Manyama


Wilma Nchito (University of Zambia)
David Namutoka (Ministry of Local Goverment)

Paper short abstract:

The North Western Province in Zambia has been called the new Copperbelt due to the increase in mining activities. These activities are bringing about changes in villages. This paper presents an analysis of the transformations that have taken place in Manyama a village in the shadow of Lumwana mine.

Paper long abstract:

The recent mining activities in the North Western province were a welcome relief for the Zambian economy which had seen a drastic downturn in mining investment and output since the 1990s. The recent exploitation of ore bodies in the North Western Province brought about a heightened level of activity in the predominantly rural region. Settlements like Manyama which are close to the mines have experienced rapid changes as migrants expectant of finding employment in the mines flood the villages. The paper presents results from a study carried out in Manyama which considered the transformations which had taken place in the settlement due to the mines. Manyama is a conglomeration of 15 villages which are experiencing encroachment by urban structures and activities do to their proximity to Lumwana mine. Using a questionnaire, the study interviewed 75 migrants to ascertain why they had moved to Manyama. It also included interviews with village headmen to verify the transformations. The study found that migrants had stimulated both social and morphological transformations in Manyama village which had become more urban in form and function. Despite becoming more urban in form the settlement remains under traditional land tenure which causes complications for the local authority in terms of development planning. The paper argues that the mines should contribute to the planning and development of such settlements which are a source of labour which is critical to the production. The paper also asserts that mining activities have produce 'rural slums' which will cause social problems in future.

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