The 1981 Entumbane Uprising fought from 8 and 12 February 1981 in and around Bulawayo suburb of Entumbane was a battle between the Zimbabwe People's Revolutionary Army (ZIPRA) guerrillas and groups of Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA) guerillas. The Rhodesian African Rifles (RAR) and other white-commanded elements of the former Rhodesian Security Forces, fighting for the Ziwe National Army, put down the uprising.


Zimbabwe People's Revolutionary Army (ZIPRA) guerrillas, in the Bulawayo's western suburb of Entumbane, rebelled. Their rebellion created a situation that threatened to develop into a fresh civil war, a few months after the end of the War of Liberation. The Rhodesian African Rifles (RAR) and other white-commanded elements of the former Rhodesian Security Forces, fighting for the Zimbabwean government as part of the new Zimbabwe National Army, put down the uprising. Members of the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA) fighters attacked both ZIPRA and the government forces during the revolt, which followed a smaller outbreak of fighting between guerrillas in November 1980.

Begining of the uprising

The uprising began around 8 pm on 11 February when fighting broke out between the two guerrilla factions in Entumbane, each of which also attacked the local RAR headquarters. When ZIPRA armoured personnel carriers moved on Bulawayo from Essexvale, to the south-east, four armoured cars from the former Rhodesian Armoured Corps, supported by A Company, 1RAR, engaged and defeated them. Meanwhile, C and D Companies, 1RAR was made up of superior groups of ZIPRA fighters. By the evening of 12 February, the uprising was over; C and D Companies were relieved, ZIPRA ceased their attacks and their armoured battle group at Essexvale surrendered to the National Army.

Casualties

The official count of those killed during the uprising was 260 people; historians peg the death-toll higher. The Zimbabwe National Army suffered no fatal casualties.