The state and african peasant farming in Katete district of Zambia’s eastern province, 1964 – 1996.

Thumbnail Image
Sakala, Robert
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
This study focuses on the relationship between the state and peasant farming impact of state in Katete district in Zambia’s post-independence period from 1964 to1996. The study begins with an examination of the status of peasant farming in the district on the eve of political independence from Britain as a way of setting the stage of the transition of peasant agriculture from colonial to independent Zambia. It demonstrates that, as the new Zambian government took over the reigns of political power from the imperial authorities in 1964, peasant farming in Katete district steadily developed. The study then examines the role played by the post-colonial government in the development of peasant farming from 1964 to 1991 under the United National Independence Party (UNIP) regime, which introduced socialistic policies. Among the policies introduced were subsidised farming inputs such as seed and fertilizer, farming loans and state controlled markets. It was during this period that there was heavy state support to the peasantry to make the country self-sufficient in food production. This study argues that as a consequence of state sponsorship, a state-reliant peasantry had developed in the district by 1991 when the UNIP government left office. The study addresses the effects on the peasantry of the economic reforms introduced by the new Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) government when it came to power in 1991. The new economic policy characterised by the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) led to the privatisation of state-owned parastatals and the liberalisation of agricultural markets. This had detrimental effects on the government-dependent peasantry in Katete and beyond. Peasant farming in the district, this study argues, declined during this period due to lack of state support which farmers had become accustomed to during the previous regime. KEY WORDS: Peasant farmers, liberalisation, farming inputs and peasant dependency.
Agriculture--Economic aspects-Zambia , Peasants--Zambia--History 1964--1991