Borders, mobilities and immobilities in Southern Africa
‘Border Jumping and Migration Control in Southern Africa’, Francis Musoni, University of Kentucky
With the end of apartheid rule in South Africa and the ongoing economic crisis in Zimbabwe, the border between these Southern African countries has become one of the busiest inland ports of entry in the world. As border crossers wait for clearance, crime, violence, and illegal entries have become rampant. Francis Musoni observes that border jumping has become a way of life for many of those who live on both sides of the Limpopo River and he explores the reasons for this, including searches for better paying jobs and access to food and clothing at affordable prices. Musoni sets these actions into a framework of illegality. He considers how countries have failed to secure their borders, why passports are denied to travelers, and how border jumping has become a phenomenon with a long history, especially in Africa. Musoni emphasizes cross-border travelers’ active participation in the making of this history and how clandestine mobility has presented opportunity and creative possibilities for those who are willing to take the risk.
‘The temporalities of (im)mobile Zimbabwean migrants at the Zimbabwe – South Africa border’, Kudakwashe Vanyoro, African Centre for Migration & Society
This presentation will explore how temporal disruptions at international borders shape (im) mobile bodies’ experiences and modes of waiting by focusing on irregular Zimbabwean migrant men at the Zimbabwe-South Africa border who have arrived in South Africa but are restricted in moving further into the interior. It probes what they do in this in-between space, their objectives of staying there, how they come to terms with the potential loss or disruption of the idea of a future and how they turn their social constructions of temporal disruptions into a resource for action. Through this inquiry, the presentation will reveal how waiting is a component of both governing Zimbabwean migrants as well as seeking agency through the relationship between time, space and humanitarianism in the Zimbabwe-South Africa border regime.
Chair: Leiza Brumat, MPC, RSCAS, EUI