Southern Rhodesian police moved in on African townships in Salisbury Oct 22 and 23, and arrested about 370 unemployed Africans under the new territorial Vagrancy Act.
Southern Rhodesian police moved in on African townships in Salisbury Oct 22 and 23, and arrested about 370 unemployed Africans under the new territorial Vagrancy Act. The new Bill was only 24-hours old as police trucks closed in around the African areas. Rushed through the Southern Rhodesian Parliament, the Bill empowers police to detain any "hooligans, spivs and loafers", without work.
On the outskirts of Salisbury convict labourers have almost completed one of the special reception camps being constructed to hold vagrant Africans until they appear before a magistrate. Most of the arrested men are aliens, and if convicted, will be deported to their homes in Northern Rhodesia, Nyasaland and Portuguese East Africa. So far only one European has been arrested under the new law.
Police state there have been cases of Africans calling them in to remove men who have bullied their way int their homes and become unwelcome non-paying guests. The new Government measures follow the recent outbreak of violence in Salisbury and Bulawayo. In the past month thousands of Africans have gone on strike for more money, but most of them have now returned to work.