Socio-economic implication of labour migration in Njombe district, Tanzania: 1890-1900

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University of Dar es Salaam
The state of underdevelopment which is a common feature in the Third World countries today has its roots in the structural and institutional links which were created over years of colonial rule and dominations. The contact between the Developing and Developed World was essentially a structural one and it created institutions which continued to tie the Developing World to the Developed World. Therefore despite, the political independence, the Developing countries continued to be integrated deeper into the larger economic organization i.e. the capitalist economic system which is increasingly becoming a global economic organization. This was done in various ways and the net result was always the perpetuation of under-development in the developing countries. There is a need to identify these links if any realistic measures towards the development of the Third World countries are to be effected. This study is one of such attempts. It is intended to identify the real problems which operated in Njombe district before and during the colonial period, which led to its underdevelopment. Throughout this study, the focus is mainly directed at an analysis of the effects of the incorporation of Njombe district into the capitalist system. Labour migration is the vehicle of this incorporation, hence the need to trace it historically so as to understand the forces behind the under-development of the district. To achieve this goal, the study deals with both the pre-colonial and colonial migrations. This will help us to situate wage labour migrations historically, and enable us to understand how the latter underdeveloped the Bena society and not the former. An analysis of the colonial policies of both the German and the British on the issue of labour for the colonial economy is of great importance here. For example they will help us to understand why these policies led to a deliberate underdevelopment of Tanzania and Njombe in particular through the creation of labour reserves. This dissertation is divided into five chapters. The first chapter is essentially a background to labour migrations. It centre an the development of capitalism in Europe and its expansion at global level: hence the ultimate incorporation of the pre-capitalist countries. The emphasis is to underscore the contradictions within the capitalist system which later forced the capitalist system to engulf pre-capitalist countries like Tanganyika. The second chapter deals mainly with pre-colonial Ubena. It explores the geographical set up of the areas, and how it related to the social organization. This part gives a background information to the area of study. Chapter three examines the labour problem in colonial Tanganyika. It analyses the manner in which both the German and the British tried to wrestle with the labour shortage which confronted their colonial economy. The fourth one discusses the nature and extent of labour migration. Here methods of labour recruitment and the magnitude of the problem is discussed. The last chapter is mainly a summary, conclusions and same recommendations on how to solve the problem of labour migration from Njombe district.
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Labour Mobility, Tanzania
Maulaga, M. P (1991) Socio-economic implication of labour migration in Njombe district, Tanzania: 1890-1900, Masters dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Available at ( )