Female Migration and Control Over resources in Tanzania: a Case of Parakuyo Maasai Women in Coast region

Lulu Elizabeth


This paper examined female migration and control over resources in Tanzania. The main objective was
to investigate how migration has influenced access to and control over resources among Maasai women.
The study was conducted in Dar es Salaam city and in Bagamoyo District in the Coast Region. Coast
Region was selected because the respondents (Maasai women) who were found in the city mentioned
it as their home areas (place of origin). The study selected purposively eighteen (18) wards in the city
and four (4) wards in the rural areas. Respondents were obtained by interviewing all those who were
found in business areas. Snowball technique was used by moving from one group to the next until the
desired number of 400 respondents was attained. The findings showed that major economic activities
in rural areas were livestock keeping alongside with crop cultivation and some petty businesses. In the
City, the main economic activities were petty businesses where goods like traditional medicine, beaded
jewellery, earrings, tobacco and beards were sold in combination. The determinants of migration for
Maasai women were both pull and push factors like reduction of livestock due to diseases and drought,
culminating to difficulties in earning income in the rural areas, the demand for Maasai goods and
presence of friends and relatives in the city. The study concluded that migration of Maasai women to
the city enabled them to access and control resources in their families. The study recommended that
migrant Maasai women in the city be assisted to improve the quality of their goods so as to increase
their incomes. Local Government Authority should ensure security in the informal sector particularly
for women and protect their goods. In the rural areas, more efforts should be done by the government
and NGOs to help Maasai practice dairy cattle so as to get more milk and money for their family up-
keep. Also there should be interventions of entrepreneurship training in rural areas for rural females
who are doing petty businesses by ensuring convenient places to conduct their businesses.

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